While Daimler has been pushing its brands Mercedes and Smart into an aggressive transition in electrification, the German automaker had so far no great involvement in EV infrastructure. That’s about to change.
The company announced today that it is leading a $82 million round of investment in the major electric vehicle charging network ChargePoint.
ChargePoint, which is already the largest EV charging network in the US with more than 33,000 chargers, will use the money to expand to Europe.
BMW had already invested in the company and it is also joining on this new round of investment along with several other existing investors – bringing the total raised to more than $255 million.
Pasquale Romano, CEO of ChargePoint, commented on the new investment:
“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. 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.”
The company confirmed that Daimler AG executive Axel Harries was appointed ChargePoint’s Board of Directors following the investment.
Harries is currently responsible for Mercedes’ new CASE-unit within Daimler (Connected, Autonomous, Sharing & Services, and Electric Drive), which is in charge of “developing technologies and innovations for next generation Mercedes-Benz vehicles, particularly the new electric product brand, EQ.”
The Daimler executive said about the new partnership between his company and ChargePoint:
“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,”
Interestingly, this major investment for Daimler comes just after ChargePoint unveiled its new 400 kW charging technology, which is the fastest electric vehicle charging system so far.
Hopefully, some of the money will be used to deploy those fast-charging stations since they will be more important to electric vehicle adoptions in the long-term than the level 2 chargers, which currently constitute most of ChargePoint’s network.