UK-listed industrial group GKN has made its first public corporate venturing deal by buying a 25.1% stake in Evo Electric, a local clean-tech power company for cars.

Alongside the £4m ($6.4m) purchase of shares, GKN has agreed to invest £1m in a joint venture – known as GKN EVO eDrive Systems – between its Driveline division and licensed technology from Evo to make Axial Flux electric motors and drive systems for use in hybrid and electric vehicles, deal sources said.

Nigel Stein, chief executive of GKN Driveline, said: "This strategic addition will enhance GKN Driveline’s ability to meet its customers’ needs in drivetrain electrification. It is aligned with our strategy of supporting vehicle manufacturers as they search for fuel savings and reduced CO2 emissions through hybrid and electric drive vehicles."

Evo Electric was spun off from Imperial College London in 2006 with financial backing from the university’s Imperial Innovations AIM-listed…

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