EV charging companies to ramp up installations

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Two large electric vehicle charging station providers made big announcements this week. In the U.K., EV Network announced a partnership with Leclanché for the supply of battery systems for its fast chargers. Meanwhile across the Atlantic, EVBox said it aims to ramp up installations to a million charging points by 2025.

EVBox made its big announcement at the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco, via CEO Kristof Vereenooghe. By its own account, the company has 60,000 charging points, including 700 fast charging stations. Ramping up to 1 million would mean a 1,500% increase in seven years.

Also present at the event – which closes today – Ahmed Aboutaleb, Mayor of Rotterdam, said: “All citizens of Rotterdam deserve a healthy and green city. Part of that is having clean transportation. To achieve this, we very much need the help of companies working in the mobility industry.”

EVBox collaborates with cities and states such as California, Amsterdam and Rotterdam to meet their emissions goals.

In the U.K., EV Network announced battery provider Leclanché will supply storage systems for its fast-charging stations. Over the last year, EV Network has acquired property rights to many locations where it intends to develop such facilities.

The fast chargers use Leclanché’s batteries to avoid load peaks caused by fast charging, mitigating the need for costly grid infrastructure management, amid a projected uptake of EV sales.

Birmingham Declaration is light on detail

Anil Srivastava, CEO of Leclanché, said: “Building on the announcement of this very exciting partnership with EVN, Leclanché is looking forward to making further announcements in due course regarding our expansion in the U.K. market, as we continue to make important progress with U.K. based strategic partners who are also extremely committed to the electrification of transport.”

U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May presented her government’s investment boost plan at the event used by EVN to announce its new partnership. The U.K. government will spend €118 million ($138 million) to boost the industry. Additional investment from the industry is expected to amount to €560 million and, it is predicted, will create more than 1,000 U.K. jobs.

Mrs. May also made a “Birmingham Declaration” – a collection of bullet points aimed at achieving zero carbon transportation, although the brief series of bullet points appears to do little more than pay lip service to international collaboration in driving EV demand and R&D, and making zero-emissions commitments. There are no details or timelines regarding the implementation of the ambitions.

Signatories to the Birmingham ambition however, include Denmark, France, Italy, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, the UAE, and the U.K., as well as Belarus, Barbados, Indonesia and regional governments.

The latest EV announcements come at a time when analysts such as Bloomberg NEF are reporting Europe has reached 1 million EV sales, and suggesting the market is set to grow at an exponential rate.

There are around 4 million EVs worldwide and 2017 saw an increase of 1.1 million, with annual sales predicted to rise to 11 million by 2025. Similarly, the demand for EV charging stations is set to grow to 20 million, catering to the needs of the 30 million EVs that could be registered by that time.

This article was amended at 1300 on 14/09/18 to reflect the €560 million U.K. private sector investment and 1,000 related jobs are anticipated figures, rather than having already been attained.