IONITY is set to massively expand its network of rapid EV chargers, with the firm committing to roll-out another 5,500 by 2025.
The latest commitment comes after IONITY received a fresh investment of €700 million from its current shareholders and new partner the BlackRock Global Renewable Power platform.
For those unaware, BlackRock is the world’s largest asset manager, with the company recently positioning itself as a leader in environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG). That’s despite the firm coming under intense pressure from climate activists, which have noted that BlackRock’s support for the fossil fuel industry undermines its commitments to the environment. Since those criticisms, however, the firm has been trying to green-up its image, with this latest investment a key part of that.
Unironically, BlackRock isn’t the only firm that has historically supported fossil fuels now getting in on the electric vehicle revolution, with IONITY’s existing shareholders also holding that distinction. That’s because IONITY is backed by some of the largest car manufacturers in the world, including BMW Group, Ford Motor Company, Hyundai Motor Group with KIA, Mercedes-Benz AG and Volkswagen Group with Audi and Porsche.
Thankfully these companies together are helping to expand one of the most reliable – if not most expensive – EV charging networks in Europe. In fact, the addition of 5,500 chargers by 2025 will see IONITY expand from the 1,500 chargers they have today to 7,000.
The expansion will help IONITY better compete with the Tesla Supercharger network, which as of March 2021 boasted 6,000 rapid chargers across Europe. However, the majority of Tesla Superchargers, bar a few in The Netherlands, are still restricted to Tesla vehicles only – one of the major advantages of IONITY.
However, that is soon to change, with Tesla promising to open up the Supercharger network to other EVs. That means IONITY will have to compete in other areas – and it doesn’t look like it’ll be competing on price anytime soon. Instead, the network will rely on its 350 kW chargers, which are faster than Tesla’s 250 kW Supercharger V3 units, which are only found at select locations across Europe.
Location location location
While IONITY is announcing a major expansion of its network in terms of sheer numbers, a quadrupling in fact, the charging network provider has also announced that it will be expanding beyond the confines of motorways. That means the new chargers will also be found near major cities and along busy trunk roads.
Additionally, new charger locations are set to have more chargers, with the company set to expand the number of points available to an average of six to 12. That growth will also happen at existing locations to help cope with increased demand.