In 2018, BP has made a few key investments in the charging space, beginning with a $5 million investment in FreeWire Technologies, a U.S. developer of rapid charging stations, and a $20 million investment in StoreDot, an Israeli company that designs ultrafast-charging batteries.
Then in late June, the major oil signed an agreement to buy Chargemaster, the operator of what is said to be the United Kingdom’s largest public EV charging network. Chargemaster has more than 6,500 charging points in the United Kingdom, and it designs, constructs, sells and maintains EV charging stations for different applications.
The new wholly owned subsidiary will be called BP Chargemaster.
“At BP we believe that fast and convenient charging is critical to support the successful adoption of electric vehicles,” said BP CEO Tufan Erginbilgic. “Combining BP’s and Chargemaster’s complementary expertise, experience and assets is an important step towards offering fast and ultrafast charging at BP sites across the U.K. and to BP becoming the leading provider of energy to low-carbon vehicles, on the road or at home.”
BP’s forecasts call for 12 million EVs in the United Kingdom by 2040, compared to only 135,000 in 2017.
In a statement, BP said the growing demand for fast charging should pair well with its U.K. retail network of more than 1,200 sites. BP Chargemaster will install ultrafast charging stations, which include chargers that can provide 100 miles of range in 10 minutes, on BP forecourts within the next year.