"GE To Buy 25,000 Electric Cars, Including GM Volts"

"General Electric Co plans to buy 25,000 electric vehicles from makers including General Motors Co over the next five years, in a move it said could spark demand for the charging equipment it sells.

The largest U.S. conglomerate aims to swap out half its fleet of 30,000 cars -- used by sales people and technicians, for instance -- with electric vehicles and to start shifting customers who lease fleets of vehicles over as well.

GE, which over the past five years has made a major push into green businesses, said on Thursday it hopes the move will speed acceptance of electric cars by getting more of them on road more quickly and prompting investment in the equipment that users will need to charge them.

The company, which earlier this year unveiled a car charger it calls the WattStation and owns a stake in battery maker A123 Systems, estimated that it could generate $500 million in electric vehicle-related revenue over the next three years."

Scott Malone reports for Reuters November 12, 2010.

Friday, November 12, 2010