Thursday, February 9

Electrify America: Siemens now investor and “key strategic technology partner”

Siemens joins Electrify America to expand the company’s ultra-rapid charging advance in North America. They have jointly invested 450 million dollars in VW’s subsidiary. Electrify America plans to use the money – Siemens is the first external investor – to advance said expansion but also expects technology exchange.

The capital injection brings Electrify America’s post-money valuation to $2.45 billion (€2.31 billion), according to Volkswagen and Siemens. The announcement did not disclose Siemens’ future stake in Electrify America – the investment through Siemens Financial Services (SFS) was a “low triple-digit million amount,” with the remainder of the $450Mn (€425Mn) coming from VW. Siemens will have seat on the Board of Directors but has yet to reveal who will take the post.

The investment is also part of a “strategic partnership.” On the one hand, the capital is to help Electrify America implement its growth plans more quickly and “achieve technological advances in charging and energy solutions for public, private and commercial offerings.” Second, Siemens’ investment reaffirms the company’s commitment to future collaboration between Siemens and Electrify America on technologies and services to drive the expansion of high-quality, reliable charging solutions, VW said. As a full-service provider of eMobility charging infrastructure, Siemens eMobility offers the full range of AC and DC charging hardware, software and services – from residential to commercial to depot applications. The company has also recently expanded the US operations with plans to make one million EV chargers in America by 2025.

Siemens has become the first external investor in Electrify America and a “key strategic technology partner,” according to Volkswagen. Reports that VW was seeking co-investors for its North American HPC network surfaced a year ago. Although the exact amount of Siemens’ investment is unknown, it is significantly less than what Reuters had indicated in the report in July 2021. At that time, there was talk of around one billion dollars.

According to Thomas Schmall, VW group board member for technology and CEO of Volkswagen Group Components, the group intends to use the $450 million, which will come in part from its own funds, to “give e-mobility in North America a further boost” and “grow consistently” in the charging and energy business segment. “The goal is to more than double Electrify America’s charging infrastructure to 1,800 locations and 10,000 fast chargers by 2026,” Schmall says. “Siemens’ entry confirms our electrification strategy to provide charging and energy solutions nationwide – and for customers of all electric vehicles.”

For SFS, it is one of the largest investments in e-mobility. “Our unique ability to combine financial and technology expertise under the Siemens umbrella is helping to decarbonize key industries, accelerate the transition to sustainable mobility, and do so in a way that is accessible to all,” said Veronika Bienert, CEO of Siemens Financial Services.

Volkswagen established Electrify America in 2017 following court rulings in the US that had found the company guilty of cheating on emission tests of their diesel vehicles. VW was ordered to spend two billion dollars over ten years to install 2,000 charge points at 500 locations. At present, Electrify America says it has already installed 800 hubs hosting 3,500 ultra-fast chargers. Initially, a form of redemption, the network is proving a commercial success for the carmaker’s subsidiary which has taken to massively increasing the coverage of HPC sites. In 2021, Electrify America recorded 1.45 million EV charging sessions, over five times more than in the previous year with over 268,000 EV charges.

Info via email; additional reporting by Sebastian Schaal, Germany.

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