Gridserve, the Iver-based company which builds clean energy power infrastructure, has revealed plans to revolutionise EV charging infrastructure in the UK as it officially launches a UK-wide network of more than 50 high power ‘Electric Hubs’ with 6-12 x 350kW chargers in each, plus almost 300 rapid chargers installed across 85 per cent of the UK’s motorway service stations, and more than a 100 Gridserve Electric Forecourts in development.
The overall objective is to a UK-wide network that people can rely on, without range or charging anxiety, wherever they live in the UK, and whatever type of electric vehicle they drive. The news comes just weeks after the acquisition of the Electric Highway from Stroud-based Ecotricity.
Gridserve describes itself as a tech-enabled sustainable energy business which builds, owns and operates dependable, low cost, clean energy solutions for critical power infrastructure.
In just six weeks since acquiring the Electric Highway, Gridserve has installed new 60kW+ chargers at more than 50 locations – from Land’s End to John O’Groats – a rate of around two new charging locations every day.
The entire network of almost 300 old Ecotricity chargers at more than 150 locations on motorways and IKEA stores is on track to be replaced by September, enabling any type of EV to charge with contactless payment options, and doubling the number of simultaneous charging sessions by offering dual charging from single chargers.
In addition, more than 50 high-powered ‘Electric Hubs’, featuring 6-12 x 350kW chargers capable of adding 100 miles of range in just 5 minutes, will be delivered at motorway sites across the UK, a programme that will see an additional investment, expected to exceed £100m.
Gridserve Electric Highway’s first Motorway Electric Hub – a bank of 12 high power 350kW Gridserve Electric Highway chargers alongside 12 x Tesla Superchargers was opened to the public in April at Rugby Services and is the UK’s largest high power motorway charging site. It will act as a blueprint for all future sites, with more than 10 new Electric Hubs, each featuring 6-12 high power 350kW chargers per location, expected to be completed this year – starting with motorways services deployments in Reading (East and West), Thurrock, and Exeter, and Cornwall Services.
Funding to achieve Gridserve’s ambitions is being supported by new investor, The Rise Fund, TPG’s global impact investing platform. The investment sits alongside Gridserve’s existing shareholder Hitachi Capital (UK) PLC, and enables the company to accelerate its strategy to deliver sustainable energy at a scale needed to move the needle on climate change. With more than $5.5 billion in assets under management across its platform, The Rise Fund works with growth-stage, high potential, mission-driven companies that have the power to change the world and help achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.
Edward Beckley, Partner at TPG and senior member of The Rise Fund’s climate investing team, said:“We are excited to partner with Gridserve in helping to make EV charging in the UK a fast and anxiety free experience. We view this as critical to enabling the rapid decarbonization of road based transportation, especially for long distance journeys.
“Decarbonised transport businesses, like Gridserve are a core pillar of The Rise Fund’s climate investing strategy”.