Octopus Energy Generation has announced it’s first investment in electric vehicle charging infrastructure in the UK, with an emphasis on accelerating the country’s transition to renewable transport.
Manchester-based EV charging network Be.EV will receive £110 million worth of funding to scale and install new charge points across the United Kingdom. Octopus Energy already supplies 100% green electricity to all off Be.EV’s chargers, however this move will allow Be.EV to grow their public charging network, already 150 strong, aligning with their commitment to adding another 1,000 charge points across the North of England and further, by 2024.
Co-Head of Octopus Energy Generation’s fund management team, Matt Setchell, said:
“Our first foray into funding EV charging infrastructure is a significant milestone. We’re accelerating the green energy transition, with more deals coming up to turbocharge it. As a nation, we need to rapidly build more EV charge points to meet the growing number of drivers going electric. Easy and fair access to chargers will help phase out petrol-guzzling cars once and for all.”
Asif Ghafoor, CEO and co-founder of Be.EV, added:
“Everybody, not just the wealthy, must be able to make the switch to electric cars but currently people who live outside London or in less affluent areas are underserved by public EV charging. If you live in a flat or terrace, you can’t charge at home. This investment addresses that imbalance and helps kickstart a national infrastructure effort that, for once, doesn’t start in London.
“The backing from Octopus is transformational for us. We have sites lined up and underway that will form dense clusters of chargers that give people the confidence to go electric. We’re also building infrastructure that communities can be proud of, reinventing charging locations as green neighbourhood hubs and developing iconic designs. Octopus’ support means we can take this unique approach to other parts of the country, addressing the imbalance in charging provision across north and south, urban and rural communities.”
With the imbalance of electric vehicle chargers outside of London, this project will help with ensuring that other communities can keep up with the move towards renewable travel. This was emphasised by Henri Murison, Chief Executive of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership, who said:
“This investment from Octopus Energy Generation and Be.EV in electric vehicle infrastructure is a huge boost for the green industrial revolution and will help us reach our net zero ambitions.
“This couldn’t come soon enough. Access to electric vehicle charging points is lower in the north than any other British region. Combine this with our inadequate rail and bus networks and it’s easy to see why so many Northerners have to rely on petrol and diesel cars to get around.”