French EV startup Driveco raises $250m to become a European leader in EV charging infrastructure

French EV startup Driveco raises $250m to become a European leader in EV charging infrastructure

Published: 12-05-2023 14:48:00 | By: Pie Kamau | hits: 4898 | Tags:

Driveco, the innovative French electric vehicle charging startup, announced a €250 million fundraising round from Dutch pension fund manager APG, one of the world’s largest institutional investors.

Existing shareholders Mirova, an affiliate of Natixis Investment Managers dedicated to sustainable investments, through its fund Mirova Eurofideme 4**, and Corsica Sole retain their majority stake in the company’s capital. This investment aims to support Driveco’s ambition to become a major player in electric vehicle charging infrastructure in France and in Europe. The additional financial resources will enable the company to strengthen its already significant presence – notably by deploying its own charging stations, accelerating its internationalization strategy and consolidate its technological innovations to continuously improve customer experience.

Driveco’s second round of funding is the largest to-date in the electric vehicle charging point sector in France and one of the most significant in the sector, globally. Founded in 2010, Driveco operates the second largest French electric vehicles charging network open to the public, with over 8,000 charging points in operation or under construction.

Ion Leahu-Aluas, CEO, Driveco: ''This fundraising round marks a new chapter of growth for Driveco, supported by APG, a renowned and experienced international investor. To tackle the climate emergency, it is essential to decarbonize the transportation sector by promoting the widespread adoption of electric cars. With more than 10 years of experience in the electric charging sector, our goal is to act as a catalyst for the energy transition by responding to the urgent need for infrastructure development, notably electrification. I would like to warmly thank all our employees for their commitment, and our new and longstanding shareholders for their trust. Together, we share a common ambition: to build a European leader and make the ‘electric revolution’ a tangible reality.''

After initially focusing its business on developing and operating charging stations for third parties, the company began in 2020 a strategic shift to own its charging points. An example of this is the financing, installation and operation of more than 600 stations located on Carrefour Market parking lots, enabling the electrification of 3,000 parking spaces.

Driveco tripled its revenue in 2022, reaching €25 million, a significant growth supported by the dedication of its 100 employees. Committed to the reindustrialization of Europe, Driveco assembles its own 22kW charger on a production line in Angers, and prioritizes European-made high-power chargers of 50kW, 150kW, 300kW and more.

To encourage everyday actions in favour of the environment, Driveco offers attractive prices and provides its customers with 100% green energy. To achieve this, the company masters the electricity supply through its subsidiary Driveco Energies. To accelerate the development of electric vehicles and bring them within everyone’s reach, Driveco has joined forces with APG, which shares a common vision for sustainable growth and the decarbonization of transportation.

Driveco will invest in three strategic directions in line with its 2030 goals:

  • Strengthen its territorial presence to consolidate its leading French position.
  • Accelerate international expansion by opening over 60,000 charging points in seven European countries, continuing the development in France and Belgium and expanding to Germany, Spain, Italy, Switzerland and the Netherlands. The objective is to enable the charging of over 1.2 million vehicles per year, avoiding the emission of 3 million tonnes of CO2 for their entire annual travels.
  • Consolidate the technological innovation strategy aimed at offering the most seamless customer experience at the charging station and through its mobile application. To achieve this, Driveco intends to double its workforce by 2025, particularly in the technological and product teams.

 

Arjan Reinders, Head of Infrastructure Europe, APG: ''We are delighted to partner with Driveco and its shareholders on this exciting project. This investment represents another milestone for APG and its pension fund clients ABP and PPF to significantly reduce carbon emissions worldwide and support the development of infrastructure solutions for the energy transition. Driveco has an outstanding track record and is well positioned to become a key contributor to the electric vehicle charging infrastructure sector in France and neighbouring European countries over the coming years, leveraging its operating excellence and customer-focused approach. We intend to support Driveco’s growth by investing capital and support the Company’s continuous efforts towards achieving best-in-class Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) standards. Alongside Corsica Sole and Mirova, we are looking forward to working with Driveco’s management team to support them in their pioneering vision.''

Witold Marais, Investment Director, Mirova: ''We are pleased to have APG onboard to support Driveco in the next phase of its growth. The company has established itself as the leading independent charging point operator in France, experiencing stellar growth while maintaining the highest level of reliability, innovation, and operational excellence. We are excited about the next years to come and to keep working alongside Driveco’s management on making the company a reference European player.''

www.driveco.com