Electric vehicle software producer looks to expand its charging network influence with new financial backing from industry heads.
LA start-up EV Connect has closed a US$12mn round of funding to back its electric vehicle software expansion.
EV Connect works in conjunction with charger hardware vendors by developing software to govern them. The company can then set up charging stations for customers through its network, which currently manages 1,000 charging sites with 6,000 ports available under contract. The start-up also offers its software to customers to customise as they see fit, under the EV Cloud division of the company.
The latest round of funding was conducted by Japanese industrial complex Mitsui & Co alongside the cleantech capital venture firm Ecosystem Integrity Fund. The total capital raised for EV Connect has reached $25mn with the latest round. The company intends to use the new investment to improve the software developed over the last nine years, with a view to expanding its network of managed chargers according to CEO Jordan Ramer.
EV Connect has stated it wants to foster an environment of positive change and consumer choice. Customers are able to make use of the software without any enforced restrictions on what type of hardware needs to be installed. This approach allows operators freedom of choice around the composition of its business assets and products on offer without compatibility becoming an issue.
"We think it helps everybody to have transparency and openness around the whole ecosystem from a software standpoint," Ramer said.
The aim is to ensure that the developing technology does not end up leaving obsolete installations in its wake as further development continues. As the industry grows, users will be able to adjust the software and hardware to match consumer behaviour in an ever-evolving commercial landscape.
"From the beginning, what they really did was start building an open architecture that would let them work with whatever came down the line years later," said Geoff Eisenberg, principal at Ecosystem Integrity Fund.
"We’re seeing the proliferation of charging stations and new entrants into the market, and prices are plummeting," Eisenberg noted. By staying out of hardware, EV Connect is able to work alongside prospective manufacturers, treating them as allies rather than competitors.