Public Electric Vehicle Charging Stations:
The Rise of the Market

According to IHS Markit, battery-powered electric vehicles (BEVs) and other types of electric vehicles global sales reached 2.5 million units in 2020 and will grow by 70% in 2021.

Indeed, the growth of the electric car market attracts energy investors, even though they are not the most cost-effective solution today. Despite this, the oil market tycoons still take the initiative to secure their shares in this niche.

Along with the increase in the number of electric vehicles, the infrastructure demand and solutions for end-users also increase. We can already see that charge services for electric vehicles have turned into a commodity. Let's find out how smart charging solutions can modernize the industry.

Three Fundamental Roles for Providing Affordable EV Services
Let's find out which three authorities can optimize the cost for smart charging of electric vehicles.
  • Charge point operators (CPO) service charge stations. Their tasks are divided into technical (maintenance and operation) and financial (pricing and marketing). Usually, small local entrepreneurs work in this area.
  • Mobility service providers (MSP) are companies that provide electric vehicle drivers with access to charge stations via apps and RFID cards. The main purpose of the MSP is to simplify charge station access regardless of the driver's location.
  • eRoaming platforms that connect CPOs and MSPs. They free vendors from interacting with many CPOs. Aggregators like Girece and Hubject were created by the energy auto companies to provide MSP and CPO access to a large number of partners.

New Business Models for Electric Vehicle Maintenance Services

There are several innovative charging station types for electric vehicles. Let's find out more about them.

V2 charge stations for electric vehicles
V2H is a technology that uses a bi-directional charger, which transfers energy between the electric vehicle and the smart home solution. These devices are equipped with DC/AC converters, which help to optimize the energy consumption between the vehicle and the smart home system. Thus, you can achieve a decrease in the peak loads indicators on the network.

V2G electric vehicle charge stations
This technology consists of transferring the accumulated electric vehicle battery to the smart grid, to ensure the uninterrupted transmission of electricity during peak hours or in the case of no connection to the central power grid.

This is a perfect solution for country houses that are connected to electric generators, which can run out of energy prematurely.

Charge stations for electric vehicles as part of public facilities
Community owners can also provide charge stations for electric vehicles. This increases the quality of service and, as a result, attracts even more new visitors.

At the same time, it is very important to choose models that provide the fastest charge process to be able to put on stream (for example, electric vehicles with a battery capacity >= 90 kWh need at least 150 kW charging speed).


What are the key success factors for each role?
The main success factors for CPO are uniting small companies into networks and providing the most attractive locations for fast-charge stations.

When it comes to MSPs, the key to ROI is to maximize the return on investment. Several suppliers dominate the electric vehicle charge market today. MSPs must have the most highly intelligent energy services or provide charge as part of integrated mobile platforms. An additional benefit of OEM-related MSPs is Plug & Charge technology, which protects the driver's account while the vehicle is charging and enables secure payment.

As for eRoaming platforms’ stability, staying afloat will be harder. Their business models can be shared with CPO aggregators. Therefore, they also must offer the best solutions to electric car drivers, such as the aforementioned Plug & Charge technology.
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IoT Solutions for Electric Vehicles

The IoT projects for electric vehicles can make charge stations convenient and smart.

For example, thanks to electric vehicle charging IoT apps that help find a charge station, drivers can easily find the nearest station and schedule a refuel in advance. Also, such apps notify users how to get the next such station via push notifications and also help to quickly reserve a queue.

The IoT can also help develop a solution for end-to-end EV charging station management, from transaction processes to supply electricity balancing. To ensure a high-quality service, it is very important to use advanced tools for work with Big Data.

As for smart city solutions, some smart equipment vendors provide smart battery packs based on BMS and IoT to supply energy for electric vehicles. They can monitor the performance level and signal that the device requires a recharge.
IoT Solutions for Electric Vehicles and Connected Cars

What Are the Main Market Predictions?

The electric car charging market profitability depends on its size, growth, and competition. In particular, this type of business will get undeniable attractiveness only when hundreds of thousands of cars will be sold in the country per year. The growth rates in the next several years will be huge for the car market, and the competition will be very low because traditional players today hardly understand its specifics and new requirements.
In general, the market for electric car charge infrastructure will reach its first peak in about 2026.
The many countries experience shows that the charging infrastructure development market is facilitated by the following set of measures for car owners support: 
  • partial compensation for the electric car cost;
  • exemption from road and transport taxes by federal authorities;
  • free parking lots arrangement;
  • separate lanes allocation on the roads by municipal authorities;
  • benefits from commercial companies, such as insurance agencies, etc.
Conclusion
The electric vehicle charging station market has just emerged. While today there are not many market players, competition is weak, and the threshold for entering the business is small, forward-thinking entrepreneurs can take the most promising locations on the charge station infrastructure market.

You should not expect immediate dividends and get full payback in the next two years, but in the future - within 3-5 years - charge stations will bring their owners a stable and instantly growing income.
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