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Kia, Kakao Mobility sign MOU to expand electric taxis here


(Kia)
(Kia)
Kia and Kakao Mobility have established a partnership to expand the supply of eco-friendly electric vehicles here, officials said Wednesday.

Officials of both companies met Tuesday at Kia’s headquarters in southern Seoul’s Apgujeong-dong and signed a memorandum of understanding to promote electric vehicle supplies.

The strategic orientation of the MOU is to combine Kia’s automobile infrastructure and Kakao’s mobility platform, seeking to advance the convenience of both users and drivers. The plan also aims at ultimately reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving air quality, in line with the heightened awareness on climate change.

As an initial step, both companies will cooperate to minimize taxi firms’ hurdles in purchasing, charging and operating electric vehicles.

In a longer term, they will carry out joint projects to design Purpose Built Vehicles for mobility use and to reflect the taxi industry’s innovation ideas, striving for mutual prosperity.

The key role for Kia is to provide electric cars and related technologies, as well as charging infrastructure and vehicle maintenance systems. Kakao Mobility will be providing its platform-based infrastructure and business solutions.

“The partnership with Kakao Mobility will contribute to Kia’s mid- and long-term vision Plan S which pivots on electric vehicle business expansion,” Kia Vice President for domestic business Kwon Hyuk-ho said.

The latest move also comes in line with Kia’s brand relaunching, he added.

Formerly Kia Motors, the automaker has recently rebranded itself as Kia Corp., in a move to step beyond the conventional automobile industry and embrace future mobility businesses.

“Electric cars not only contribute to reducing carbon emissions but also offer an improved mobility service both for drivers and passengers,” said Ahn Kyu-jin, executive director at Kakao Mobility.

“We hope that this partnership lays the basis for eco-friendly mobility services here.”

By Bae Hyun-jung (tellme@heraldcorp.com)
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