the competition is sharpening between start-ups in the sector
Start-ups specializing in charging stations are not experiencing the crisis. 228108255/Pictures news – stock.adobe.com Between…
Start-ups specializing in charging stations are not experiencing the crisis. 228108255/Pictures news – stock.adobe.com
Between 330,000 and 480,000 charging points open to the public will be needed by 2030 to support the rise of electric vehicles.
In a globally depressed market, specialized start-ups at charging stations decidedly unaware of the crisis. With 250 million euros raised this Wednesday from a Dutch pension fund, the start-up Driveco, created in 2016, continues to ride a strong trend of recent months. Allego (160 million in March 2022), Electra (160 million euros in June 2022), Bump (180 million euros in September 2022), Zeplug (240 million euros, also in September), Logivolt (70 million, December 2022)… all have raised considerable sums thanks to infrastructure funds to support electrification.
According to specialists, however, nearly 80% of the charge will be in the private sphere. However, this market seems largely promised to energy companies. EDF, Engie, TotalEnergies already have customer contact in their electricity supply and all have ready-to-use solutions on the market. Condominiums or business customers, less captive to the three major energy companies, are nevertheless development relays for start-ups.
Return on investment
But it is above all the so-called public charging (20% of the total) that can make players in the sector salivate. According to data from Avere, between 330,000 and 480,000 charging points open to the public will be needed by 2030 to support the rise in power of the electric vehicle. That is more than 3 times the current number of terminals. Still, the battle promises to be fierce. The energy companies mentioned above have networks on the main roads, as do car manufacturers. You’re herebut also BMWVolkswagen, Ford, Mercedes (Ionity network) or Renault (Mobilize network) are obviously on the lookout.
There are only 1.2 million electric or hybrid vehicles out of 38 million in France today. This leaves room for many players
Ion Leahu-Aluas, Managing Director of Driveco
Will everyone get their piece of the pie? “There are only 1.2 million electric or hybrid vehicles out of 38 million in France today. This leaves room for many actors. Especially since the ban on thermal vehicles in 2035 will boost the market”, wants to believe Ion Leahu-Aluas, general manager of Driveco. It prevents. If the presence in the capital of infrastructure funds not obsessed with immediate profitability gives visibility, the return on investment will arise one day. But the good sites draining traffic are not unlimited. “There are key places to take and pure-players/start-ups have a stake in creating the most relevant networks as long as it is easy to raise funds”says Simon Issard, a specialist for Colombus Consulting.
To amortize the cost of installing terminals, which can amount to several hundred thousand euros, the frequency of use must be sustained. Driveco, like others, tries to establish traffic prediction models. But all still lack perspective. Also, in certain areas more at risk, it is not uncommon to see terminal developers asking the owners of the land in question to extend the duration of the concession to ensure that profitability is achieved. Beyond the traffic, the reliability of the terminals must be irreproachable. However, the rate of availability of terminals according to analysts is today in France around 80%. Finally, simplicity for the end user must be there.
Admittedly, most of the start-ups raised are targeting the European market. This increases growth prospects. The heterogeneity of uses as well as the expected boom in electricity are currently supporting a myriad of players. But, given the sums at stake to install and operate a network of terminals, as well as the strong potential for economies of scale on these infrastructures, concentration seems inevitable in the long term. “The players who have been able to create a good network, with an important quality of service and a reputation for their users, will be able to continue, but others will disappear or will be bought out”concludes Simon Issard.