ReliOn, a hydrogen fuel cell maker whose products are used for backup power systems, has received an investment from engine maker Cummins. The size of the investment was not disclosed, but ReliOn CEO Gary Flood said the investment would help the company with global expansion.

“Cummins is committed to assist ReliOn toward increasing our market visibility and access,” said Flood. “Additionally, Cummins will use its broad capabilities in engineering and manufacturing to accelerate ReliOn’s efforts to drive costs down and increase the distribution reach of our fuel cell products around the world.” As a result of the deal, a representative from Cummins will join the ReliOn board.

Spokane-based ReliOn had previously raised more than $85 million from investors such as Montlake Capital, Robeco, Oak Investment Partners, Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital LP and others. Formerly known as Avista Labs, ReliOn is a spin-off from Spokane utility Avista.

ReliOn’s fuel cells are used for backup power for military communications systems, as well as utilities and transportation systems. For example, the fuel cells can power railroad and traffic signaling systems when existing power systems fail. ReliOn provides backup power at 1,600 sites in 42 state and 34 countries. It employs 45 people.

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