EV Charging

How to expand your EV charging business

Shane Thomasfrom installers ICEE Managed Services explains why electric vehicle (EV) workplace charging units and related infrastructure represents a major business opportunity for electrical wholesalers.

from a minority interest to the mainstream. A clear sign is big investments by major car manufacturers. Many already offer one or more hybrid or purely electric models. In the future, some will be going further and dropping the internal combustion engine altogether. Helped by government grants over several


years and aimed at the private vehicle buyer and the commercial market, EV numbers are multiplying. Government motives are simple but essential – cut toxic pollution from vehicle exhausts, improve air quality at the local level and support steps to reduce global warming. By the year 2040, UK legislation will end the sale of all new conventional petrol and diesel cars and vans. The public recognise these important points and principles. Increasingly, the EV is becoming socially and ethically acceptable. More and more people are buying them. The trouble is, a nation-wide infrastructure

of battery re-charging points lags behind vehicle uptake. EV charging provision has to become as ubiquitous as petrol and diesel filling stations are today. Every village, town and city, including motorway service areas, must offer enough EV charging facilities to cope with demand. This applies to short- distance travel as well as longer journeys. Today, if you drive an EV there is always the worry about finding a place to re-charge, before it becomes an emergency. To accelerate better availability, the

government’s Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) offers grants to buy and install charging equipment. This initiative is aimed at both the residential market and the workplace. As many already know, for the electrical wholesaler this trend offers important new business potential.

A wake up call In business terms, the management of any organisation where many employees drive to work is waking up to a stark fact – employees

34 | electrical wholesalerApril 2018

will want to drive EVs (not forgetting e-bicycles, electric scooters and motorbikes). When they get to work they will want to know they can re-charge so they can get home later with a safe margin. No one is going to risk venturing beyond the range of their fully charged battery if they can’t re-charge, or top up, anywhere and anytime they choose. Re-charging a battery seems simple, but in the case of EVs and the workplace it is a little more complicated. Take an organisation employing 100 people. By year-end, 10 per cent may want to drive EVs. Allowing for extra

capacity and expansion, this means installing at least 15 chargers. What effect will this addition have on the building’s power supply, be that an office, factory, hospital or super-store, or anywhere with a large or small car park? As the trend develops and numbers

increase, when EV drivers get to work and plug in, this may cause a significant spike in power demand, with a drop when employees leave later. Will the overall supply and the distribution network require beefing up? What’s more, how will the

The EV charging market offers great potential

to electrical wholesalers. This business sector is on the way up, is not yet mature and

still has a long way to go. The residential market also is in the ascendant.

silent revolution is happening on our roads. The almost noiseless electric vehicle (EV) is moving

Shane Thomas

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