Electric Vehicles


Electric Car Charging applications and the companies involved in that space may not be the main focus of our blog but it is important to be aware of the concerns many electric car consumers are faced with. The main issue is the lack of electric car charging stations. Better Place seems to have the answer. Not only have they developed an effective infrastructure of charging stations but they will also have something they call “Switch Stations”.

A switch station is the gas station for electric cars. The concept is simple, you drive up a ramp and a machine that operates similar to a conveyor belt with some other contraptions removes the battery which is located at the bottom of the electric car and then replaces it with the new fully charged battery. When I first heard of this concept I was completely confused but when I saw the video I was convinced that this process made sense. In addition Better Place provides software that lets you know where the nearest charging stations and switch stations are located. This is important due to the fact that all electric vehicle owners typically experience anxiety when their battery runs low. Knowing that there is a station within range helps avoid this issue.

Hsbc, Lazard Asset Management and Morgan Stanley Investment Management, also seems to be convinced about this company’s ability to create an electric car charging infrastructure. In fact, they are so convinced that they invested 350 million dollars into Better Place, giving the company a new valuation of 1.25 billion dollars. Although this company is not public at this moment my gut is telling me that this company will be public in the near future.

If you think that’s exciting, listen to this, the company seems to be working with Nissan-Renault which will create a unique electric car that will be sold in markets where Better Place has a presence. This is purely speculation at this point but if Better Place decided not to go public it may decide to be acquired by one of its partners. Again, this is purely speculation right now but if Better Place started to see some momentum and I were making the decision at Nissan-Renault. I would have a huge interest in acquiring Better Place!

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