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Blink Charging – Charging Ahead with its first EV Charging Unit in Greece

26 Sep Blink Charging – Charging Ahead with its first EV Charging Unit in Greece

Blink Charging (NASDAQ: BLNK), a provider of Electric Vehicle (EV) charging equipment, announced its foray into Greece, with the deployment of its first Blink electric vehicle charging stations. The company’s subsidiary Blink Charging Hellas, which it owns in association with Eunice Energy Group (EEG) and others, is part of the green energy electrification of the Rio-Antirrio “Charilaos Trikoupis” Bridge, an initiative by WE ENERGY that is dedicated to the use of renewable energy.

As part of a special public unveiling ceremony to mark the bridge’s 15 anniversary celebrations, and to commemorate its transition to a renewable energy supply, the company installed two dual port charging stations on the bridge, each of the four ports having a 22 kW charging capacity as per a company statement.

Michael D. Farkas, Blink’s Founder and CEO commented

“The deployment of these two dual-port charging stations supports the green energy initiatives led by WE ENERGY and assists Greece with the development of its EV infrastructure. He further added, We couldn’t be more excited to be taking an active part in this cultural shift towards widespread adoption of electric vehicles in Greece.”

The company has plans to deploy additional EV charging stations across Greece in the coming months, as part of its focus on creating a more environment friendly transport system. Blink is committed to tackle climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions owing to transportation, not only in the US but worldwide.

Blink Charging, (NASDAQ: BLNK)

Market Cap: $68.63M; Current Share Price: 2.64 USDChart
Data by YCharts

The Global Electric Vehicle Charging Market is poised to reach USD 63.9 billion by 2025, growing at a CAGR of 32.6 percent, according to a report by Grand View Research, Inc. The growth of this industry is a result of the initiatives by governments around the world, in the form of tax rebates, grants, and subsidies for adoption of renewable and more environment friendly options for transportation. Unlike conventional vehicle which can only replenish their fuel at specific public locations, Electric vehicles can be charged at home or commercial charging stations.

However, the limitation of sufficient charging capacity to cover long distances discourages the use of these vehicles. There is an increased focus on research and development activities, especially in the passenger car sector, to improve infrastructure and supply equipment and establish EV chargers at easily accessible public places, to allow long distance travel as well. Range anxiety which acts as the biggest impediment for the market at present, will soon be a thing of the past, with companies racing to develop connectivity modules.

A report by McKinsey estimates that by 2025, there will be more than 350 EV models introduced into the market, with ranges of 200 miles. However, a lack of charging infrastructure could hamper the growth in the market. The report also highlights the fact that besides price and driving range, lack of access to charging stations is the third most serious barrier to EV. However, there have been a gradual decline in prices and improvement in driving range and companies are making a concerted effort to provide the requisite charging infrastructure. Furthermore the total energy demand for electric vehicles in China, United States and European Union alone will reach 280 billion kilowatt-hours by 2030.

Image Source: Mckinsey

There has been an increasing interest in EV’s owing to environmental concerns, which has prompted leading automobile makers such as BMW, Daimler, Ford, and Volkswagen to announce an investment plan for deployment of 400 charging sites across Europe. China and Japan are at the forefront of adopting this technology owing to increased awareness and emerging technology. 

Blink is one of the largest operators and a pioneer of Electric Vehicle charging stations in the U.S, committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions released by transportation. The company has over 15,000 charging stations across the U.S. The primary business of the Blink is Blink EV Charging Network, EV Charging or Supply Equipment (EVSE) and Charging Services.

The Blink Network is a proprietary cloud-based that keeps track of all EV charging stations connected to the network along with their charging data. The service allows for the remote monitoring and management of EV charging stations, payment processing, EV charging station location directions, availability, and applicable fees and caters to a host of interested parties such as businesses, property owners and property managers.

The company enters into agreements for establishing and maintaining EV charging stations by offering flexible business models, in which the company owns, operates and takes care of the maintenance of the equipment, while sharing a percentage of EV charging revenue with the property owner. In addition it allows the property owners to purchase, own and operate EV charging stations.

The company has strategic partnerships with airports, automobile dealers, healthcare /medical institutions, hotels, residential facilities, parks and recreation areas, parking lots, religious institutions, restaurants, retailers, schools and universities, stadiums, supermarkets, transportation hubs, and workplace locations as per the company.

Blink which was initially known as “Car Charging Group Inc” on its inception in 2009, acquired three EV charging service providers namely 350Green and Beam Charging in 2013, to become the largest EV charging service provider in the U.S. Blink network and the Blink EV charging assets were acquired from ECOtality, Inc. The name of the company was changed to Blink Charging Co. in 2017.

The company has a series of firsts to its credit, including the introduction of offering kilowatt-hour (“kWh”) pricing, reducing time-based EV charging increments,  capturing fleet vehicle odometer information and offering remote start functionality.

Image Source: Company

Blink is a proponent of the kilowatt-hour pricing structure, which is usage–based, unlike time or session based charges. However few states allow kWh pricing while others don’t. The pricing for kWh charging ranges from $0.39 to $0.79 per kWh in case of Level 2 EV chargers and $0.49 to $0.59 per kWh for DC fast chargers. While per session charging sessions range from $6.99 – $9.99 per session. The company also offers membership and incentives to the users.

Risk Assessment

  • The industry is still at a nascent stage in many countries, this provides an excellent opportunity for growth and expansion, as there is an increasing demand for environmental friendly alternatives and renewable energy sources.
  • The Electric Vehicle segment as a whole is seeing increasing support and encouragement in form of incentives, subsidies, rebates and concessions from governments and regulatory authorities worldwide. This provides a favorable environment for growth and development for all participants of the industry
  • There is a rise in research and development effort, as well as collaborations to advance the infrastructure and framework, for not only EV vehicles but various ancillary industries related to it such as components, charging services etc,
  • A decrease in battery costs has led to the decrease in the prices of EV vehicles, thereby improving their adoption; however they still remain more expensive than gas fueled vehicles, which may act as an impediment to their wide scale acceptance.
  • The charging infrastructure, especially those that offer commercial direct current fast chargers (DCFC) for rapid refueling in public locations, are not economically profitable, owing to high capital costs and low utilization rates due to steeper pricing. This calls for an increased demand for the product to make it profitable and make it a viable alternative to ICE and charging at home.
  • The successful adoption of EV is primarily dependant on access to easy to use and affordable charging infrastructure. The target group, which is the average customer who now drives a fuel-based vehicle, will have to be convinced of being able to ride his EV without the fear of the process of charging being more complicated, time-consuming and non-reliable.
  • Conclusion
    We believe that if the company is able to maintain its current momentum and expand its operations globally to cover untapped and emerging markets, then it has the potential to capture a major share of the EV charging market.

    Disclosure: I/we have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any position within the next 72 hours.

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