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Electra has announced a record round of financing of €160 million to simplify charging and thus stimulate the switch to electric cars.
Electra is revolutionising electric vehicle charging with the installation of fast charging stations in all major and medium-sized French urban areas. The customer journey has been entirely redesigned to be as simple as possible with unique features both on the app and the webapp.
The company raised a record amount of equity funding from Eurazeo, which leads this round, and from additional investors: RGREEN Invest, RIVE Private Investment, Serena, the Chopard Group, SNCF (574 Invest) and RATP Capital Innovation.
It is going international and will open its first office in Brussels in July.
It plans to have more than 8,000 fast charging points by 2030 and wants to revolutionise the current charging system by creating a much simpler customer experience.
Electra is revolutionising electric vehicle charging with the installation of fast charging stations in all major and medium-sized French urban areas. The customer journey has been entirely redesigned to be as simple as possible with unique features both on the app and the webapp. The company has announced a record round of financing of €160 million to simplify charging and thus stimulate the switch to electric cars. The goal is to speed up the development of the network in France with fast charging points open to the public and to expand throughout Europe. As the only pure player in the market for fast charging in France, the company will now be able to compete with the European platforms that have emerged in recent years.
The confidence of leading investors and partners to speed up deployment
This €160 million equity financing is the largest ever raised by a French company in the fast charging sector and will enable Electra to deploy €300 million in capital expenditure over the next few years. It has been carried out with leading investors: Eurazeo, which is leading this round, RGREEN Invest, RIVE Private Investment, Serena, the Chopard Group, SNCF (574 Invest) and RATP Capital Innovation. Their support has given additional impetus to the company's intense development at all levels over the past 18 months - from fully integrated technological innovations to the launch of a series of stations and the increasing number of contracts signed with major names in asset management, retail, hospitality, the automotive sector and fleets, such as AccorInvest, Altarea, Indigo, Louvre Hotels Group, Primonial REIM France and the Chopard Group.
Deploying hundreds of fast charging stations in cities to meet booming needs
The number of electric cars on the road is already high, with 600,000 vehicles in use, and will grow significantly, with an estimated 8 million in 2030*. To keep up with this increasing demand, the charging infrastructure must also be expanded. With this in mind, Electra continues to launch charging hubs in car parks open 24/7 to the public in major French cities. It is now launching its development in Europe with the same level of enthusiasm. A first office will open in Brussels this summer before other countries by the end of 2022. The aim is to have 300 charging points available by the end of 2022, 600 by the end of 2023 and more than 8,000 by 2030.
To be able to charge as many cars as possible in a short period of time and with an innovative charging experience, Electra has chosen to set fast charging points (22 to 300 kW output) with a proven maintenance system and a customer relations platform with 30 experts available 24/7.
“This fundraising with reference investors, Eurazeo, which is leading this round, RGREEN Invest, RIVE Private Investment, Serena, the Chopard Group, SNCF (574 Invest) and RATP Capital Innovation, will enable us to roll out our charging services on a large scale. Our sole objective is to offer an optimal charging experience by combining the best of digital technology and the best of infrastructure for a successful customer journey. We need to come up with innovations which enhance the experience to make electric vehicles truly attractive. The Electra team and I want to speed up the energy transition with the objective of silent cars that greatly reduce carbon emissions and fine particles. By 2030, the use of Electra charging stations is expected to save 4.4 million tons of CO²”, said Aurélien de Meaux, CEO of Electra.
Removing the obstacles to charging by making the user experience as simple as possible
With 55 employees (and several dozen in the process of being hired), Electra has quickly become the largest fast charge team in France, bringing together “infratech” talents. For example, they have developed unique software bricks in-house to make the customer journey easier. Indeed, 60%** of electric car drivers encounter difficulties when charging (breakdowns, complicated payment, occupied charging station, excessive waiting times...).Thus, Electra is currently the only operator to offer pre-booking of charging stations on an app which has been designed with the users in mind. They are offered the nearest and most suitable charging station for their vehicle, an estimate of charging time and cost, as well as payment via the app, a credit card or a charging card. Electra also offers pricing per kWh, at a single rate, which is fairer and more transparent for the consumer. Up to 3,500 charges are made on average each month at Electra stations, with an expected average of 20,000 per month by the end of 2022.
"We are very pleased to become the reference investor for Electra, which is developing a public network of electric vehicle charging points in France and thus contributing to removing the obstacles to the take-up of electric vehicles, by providing users with a high-performance, high-quality infrastructure. We have been impressed by Electra's achievements since it was founded, its large team of charging experts, and its unique service offering (technological innovations and infrastructure), allowing for an optimised customer experience. Switching to electric vehicles is an important vector in the transition to a low-carbon economy, which is fully in line with our ESG and sustainability expectations", said Melissa Cohen, Managing Director, Infrastructure at Eurazeo.
M&A Consulting - Gottengreen
Legal & Tax lawyers - Linklaters
Market research - Oliver Wyman
Electra offers fast charging hubs for electric vehicles. Co-founded by Aurélien de Meaux, Augustin Derville and Julien Belliato, the company's ambition is to definitively erase the barriers to switching to electric cars by deploying a massive, fast and efficient charging network. With the support of 55 high-level experts, the company is heavily investing in innovation and research for the benefit of a unique user experience: comprehensive, intuitive and customisable mobile interfaces. All this is being done as part of a dense network with more than 8,000 charging points available by 2030.
*Oliver Wyman, March 2022
**Ipsos, June 2022