CSP spoke with three executives at companies in the EV charger business: BTC Power, Electric Era and EVgo.
“We are laser-focused on convenience stores. We chose to work with c-stores because they are a buyer base desperately in need of our solution,” said Lee of Electric Era.
While EVgo is not exclusively focused on convenience stores, Jonathan Levy, chief commercial officer, said c-stores are a big segment for his company as the market unfolds.
Michael Wagner, COO at BTC Power, emphasizes that his company is a hardware manufacturer. The company sees an opportunity to build technology to move from the gas pump to the electric charger.
Convenience retailers have a lot to think about when considering if, how and when to add EV charging stations on their properties. Some of the common questions that arise:
- What is the investment?
- How long to earn return on investment?
- Is it better to own the equipment or let another party own and manage it?
- How many electric vehicles are in a market, and how many other EV charging stations are nearby?
- What do my customers need and want?
- Can my forecourt handle the necessary infrastructure?
- Is the power grid in my area sufficient?
- Will equipment installation disrupt the business? For how long?
Levy said EVgo offers different ways to work with c-stores. EVgo’s basic business model is that it owns and operates the chargers. He said as operators recognize that EV charging is an amenity, more are interested in owning the equipment rather than just hosting it. Levy describes a new offer called EVgo Extend as a white-label offering whereby the chargers are owned by the retailer.