Originally published on CleanTechnica.
ChargePoint announced today that it has secured $82 million in funding in support of a full-frontal attack on European markets (a move we’ve known about for months but agonizingly had to hold our tongue on). This first round of funding was led by Daimler and BMW iVentures and will be supported by future rounds to support the European expansion.
Spain, Germany, and the greater European subcontinent have led the charge into renewables and are now flipping to Act 2 of the same plan — e-mobility — and ChargePoint wants in on the action.
“The automobile industry is at an inflection point, with more vehicles coming onto the market offering highly advanced electric powertrains than any other time in the world’s history,” said Pasquale Romano, CEO of ChargePoint. “The significant investment by our lead investor Daimler and others not only underscores a collective commitment to e-mobility around the world, but lays the groundwork for Europe’s most comprehensive charging network.”
Turning back a few pages, ChargePoint rolled out its new Chargepoint Express Plus Family in January, which transforms charging and sets the stage for a phased rollout of high-power DC fast chargers that can deliver power at up to 400 kW speeds.
Combining building momentum in Europe with ChargePoint’s established ecosystem looks to be a great combination. Though, it is not moving into virgin territory, as Europe is chock full of both municipal and private players in the EV charging world.
UK EV charging locator service Zap Map lists more than 12,182 charge points in the UK alone, with ChargeMap showing thousands across the mainland.
In support of the move, Daimler AG executive Axel Harries has been appointed to the ChargePoint Board of Directors. This should help to ground the California-based ChargePoint in all matters European and to more quickly integrate into the cultural smorgasbord that is Europe.
The two companies are rallying around a new mantra dubbed CASE: Connected — Autonomous — Shared & Services — Electric, which they believe sums up the future of personal transport. With conventional auto manufacturers embracing the future with bold vision statements that include “electric,” it is clear that Tesla has awoken the sleeping giants and will be facing real competition in the coming years as the supply chains, production lines, marketing strategies, and sales teams change course towards electrification.
Whether that can happen fast enough or not is yet to be seen, but what we do know is that they are putting their money on the line in support of this renewed vision. This latest investment by Daimler AG and BMW iVentures makes it clear that conventional auto manufacturers are more interested in investing in EV charging infrastructure, perhaps as a result of the success Tesla has enjoyed with its proprietary Supercharger network.
Mr Harries shared his perspective on this latest investment by Daimler AG:
“While pursuing the systematic expansion of our CASE ecosystem based on our new product brand EQ, we also remain open and ready for partnerships and cooperation at the highest level. ChargePoint is a company of experts in the field of electric mobility charging solutions with a great deal of know-how in both hardware and software. Together we will be able to significantly expand the product portfolio in the area of intelligent charging solutions and provide the customer with an all-embracing premium offer for electric mobility.”
This is the next in a series of moves of big players as the battle for e-mobility heats up in Europe, where e-mobility is still in its infancy.
Reprinted with permission.