After years of slow progress, electric vehicles are finally catching up in Europe and other parts of the world. However, there is still significant uncertainty as to when and how large-scale adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) will occur.
In Europe, fast chargers are being rolled out at a higher rate than standard ones to help users facilitate longer journeys. There are now more than 38,000 public fast chargers, up 55 per cent in 2020, says a report.
According to some estimates, sales of electric vehicles could account for one-fifth of new car sales globally by 2025; more bullish projections see EVs taking 50 per cent of sales or more by 2030.
ChargePoint acquired ViriCiti
Numerous Dutch companies have emerged, focusing on the e-mobility components of the charging infrastructure/services, manufacturing of electric vehicles/scooters, and more.
Based out of Amsterdam, ViriCiti is one such company that provides electrification solutions for eBus and commercial fleets. Recently, ChargePoint, an EV charging network operator, has acquired ViriCiti for a total purchase price of approximately €75M in cash, subject to adjustments.
The announcement comes few weeks after ChargePoint agreed to acquire Austria-based has·to·be, an e-mobility provider with a charging software platform, for approx €250M.
How will this acquisition benefit ChargePoint?
According to ChargePoint, ViriCiti will enhance its fleet solution portfolio of hardware, software, and services by integrating information sources to optimise electric fleet operations.
It includes battery management, charging station monitoring, OEM-agnostic telematics, vehicle maintenance, and vehicle operations data.
In an exclusive interview with Silicon Canals, Andy Piftor, Senior Marketing Manager, ViriCiti, says, “The market has grown tremendously in the past few years. This means we need to be able to accelerate our growth to keep up with the growing demand. This strategic acquisition will give us the necessary resources to help us grow at a faster pace.”
Further, the combined solution will enable fleets to identify what routes to electrify, monitor and report uptime, optimise fueling to ensure operational readiness at low cost, and integrate vehicle and charging station management.
As per the company’s claims, the ViriCiti team, customer accounts, and technology will become part of ChargePoint’s operations, post-acquisition.
Talking about operations, Piftor shares, “At the end of the integration, ViriCiti will operate as part of ChargePoint, not as a separate business. ChargePoint and ViriCiti have grown tremendously in the last months, so we need the space for sure, but we do not know yet how this will be arranged. The founders are still very much involved, they will be staying on board with different titles and will continue to direct their effort towards growing the business further.”
ViriCiti: What you need to know
Founded in 2012, ViriCiti offers a cloud-based monitoring system to improve electric vehicle operations.
From energy management to maintenance, ViriCiti’s solution provides in-depth insights tailored to each fleet’s needs. At present, the company operates in the United States and Europe for public transit with over 150 vehicle OEMs and fleet operators.
Founded by Alexander Schabert, Freek Dielissen, Jan-Willem Heinen, and Simon Rijk in 2012, the company has raised €7M in funding to date.
Sharing about the company’s roadmap, Piftor adds, “It is difficult to give you a precise roadmap for the next few years, ChargePoint is also in a quiet period before earnings call, so we also can’t go into detail. What we can say is that we will continue to focus on our core markets in the public transport and commercial fleet sectors.”
Freek Dielissen, CEO of ViriCiti, says, “Our mission over the last nine years has been to help fleet operators manage their electric operations. Today, zero-emission transportation is at a tipping point, and we are excited to join EV charging leader ChargePoint, integrate our complementary offerings and tap into the resources that will enable the electrification of fleets at a faster pace across North America and Europe.”
ChargePoint: What you need to know
Founded in 2007, ChargePoint develops and manufactures technology for its network of electric vehicle charging stations.
The company’s cloud subscription platform and software-defined charging hardware are designed to include options for every charging scenario from home and multifamily to the workplace, parking, hospitality, retail, and transport fleets of all types.
To date, the company has delivered more than 92 million charging sessions with drivers plugging into the ChargePoint network every two seconds or less.
Pasquale Romano, President and CEO of ChargePoint, says, “The future of fleets is electric, and integrating charging solutions with the many business systems already in place in today’s depots is essential to successful electrification. Adding ViriCiti’s vehicle management capabilities to our fleet portfolio allows ChargePoint to deliver more functionality to eBus and commercial fleet operators, while remaining open to integration with existing telematics systems. The combined solution underscores the importance of software to EV charging and will ensure operational readiness at low cost as fleets of all types across North America and Europe continue to electrify.”