Sandvik announced it acquired Artisan Vehicle Systems (AVS), which makes battery-powered underground mining equipment. AVS is based in Camarillo, California, USA, and is a supplier of battery packs, electric motors, power electronics, software and control systems.

AVS will become a business unit in the Load and Haul Division within Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2019.

Leadership at Sandvik said the acquisition was a strategic move. “It is in line with our ambition to be leading in the market for battery electric vehicle solutions,” said Lars Engström, president, Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology.

In October, Sandvik announced the Battery Electrification Innovation and Development Center in Turku, Finland. The acquisition will add to the resources, both physical and intellectual, available to the center, Mats Eriksson, president, Load and Haul Division, Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology, said. “The combination of know-how and skills creates a very strong platform,” he said.

AVS had revenues of $12.3 million and 60 employees in 2017. It made headlines that year for supplying electric haulers and loaders to Kirkland Lake Gold’s Macassa mine, in northeastern Ontario, Canada. In October 2017, AVS announced it was building a related technology support and development campus in Kirkland Lake.

Sandvik described Artisan as the market leader with the most battery electric vehicles currently operating in underground mining.