The EV market is booming with new electronic vehicles by companies like Tesla, Ford, and others. With the whole EVs becoming common, there are new markets that are open to expand, one of them is making charging stations for EVs. Well, the good news on that front is that Shell plans to make 500,000 charging points for EVs by 2025.
Shell Plans to Deploy 500,000 Charging Points for EVs
Shell recently announced that it is planning to make 500,000 charging points for EVs, these will be electric charging stations. Shell aims to complete this task within the next 4 years that is by the end of 2025 which is not that far.
The good thing about Shell making 500,000 charging points for EVs is that it points in the booming of the EV charging infrastructure. With Shell taking such a huge charge on this front, more and more companies and investors will be coming forward to invest in this front. This will lead many small companies to go public and then they can get some capital investment to meet the demands.
Since 2021 began, three companies are so far acquired by special purpose acquisition vehicles and they are on the right track to become public. A third has risen tens of millions of capital from big names in the private equity investment for its own path to commercial viability.
This whole SPAC thing began last year in the month of September. So an electric vehicle charging network called ChargePoint made a deal and merged with SPAC(special purpose acquisition company) Switchback Energy Acquisition Corporation, with a whopping USD 2.4 Billion market valuation. The company’s public listing is all set to go live on the New York Stock Exchange on February 16.
An interesting thing happened in January this year when EVgo, which is an owner and operator of electric vehicle charging infrastructure merged with Climate Change Crisis Real Impact I Acquisition which is another SPAC. The total valuation of the merger was USD 2.6 Billion. This is a huge win for the company’s privately held owner, the power development and investment company LS Power.
So LS Power and EVgo own 100% of the company today and they will be rolling all of its equity into the transaction. After the second quarter, when the transaction will be closed, LS Power and EVgo will hold a 74% stake in the company.
One more deal that soon followed was the merger agreement of Volta Industries with Tortoise Acquisition II. This will give Volta a market valuation of USD 1.4 Billion. The shares of SPAC company, trading under ticker SNPR are rocketing up to 31.9% in trading earlier this week and the current stock trading is around USD 15 per share.
Private Equity Firms Also Getting in Charging Points for EVs Game
A very common theme is that private equity firms are also getting their hands in making charging points for EVs. Riverstone Holdings which is a very big company, also entered the game by investing in FreeWire. That company raised about USD 50 Million earlier this year in a new round of funding.
“The writing is on the wall and the investors have to take the time. There’s been a flight out of the traditional investment opportunities in markets,” said FreeWire chief executive Arcady Sosinov, in an interview. “There’s been a flight out of the oil and gas companies and out of the traditional utilities. You have to look at other opportunities… This is going to be the largest growth opportunity of the next 10 years.”
As of now, FreeWire works with BP to deploy its infrastructure. However, the company’s charging technology can be easily installed in the places where people spend 20 minutes to an hour. These places can be malls, fast food companies, post offices, grocery stores.
With Biden’s push to boost EV adoption in federal fleets, places like post offices can be ideal places to deploy charging stations and that is why it can be a big opportunity, Sosinov said.
“One of the reasons we find electrification of mobility so attractive is because it’s not if or how, it’s when,” said Robert Tichio, a partner at Riverstone in charge of the firm’s ESG efforts. “Penetration rates are incredibly low… compare that to Norway or Northern Europe. They have already achieved double-digit percentages.”
There was also this recent Super Bowl commercial from GM that featured Will Farrell and it depicted how far Norway is when it comes to electric vehicle adoption.
More on Shell and Its Plans
Shell already has an electric vehicle charging ecosystem in some of the markets. Shell also acquired Greenlots back in 2019. Greenlots is an EV charging developer. And earlier this year Shell also acquired Ubitricity in the U.K. So Shell is making some big steps towards making charging points for EVs.
“As our customers’ needs evolve, we will increasingly offer a range of alternative energy sources, supported by digital technologies, to give people choice and the flexibility, wherever they need to go and whatever they drive,” said Mark Gainsborough, executive vice president, New Energies for Shell, in a statement at the time of the Greenlots acquisition. “This latest investment in meeting the low-carbon energy needs of US drivers today is part of our wider efforts to make a better tomorrow. It is a step towards making EV charging more accessible and more attractive to utilities, businesses and communities.”
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