Cornell team proposes new scheme for Lithium-sulfide battery cathodes
Wärtsilä to supply dual-fuel propulsion package for two new Dutch tankers

Pike Research ranks ChargePoint, DBT as top EV charging equipment supply companies

The new Pike Pulse Grid for EVSE manufacturers. Click to enlarge.

Pike Research forecasts that global sales of electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 37% between 2012 and 2020 as the global market for plug-in vehicles (PEVs) grows, rising from less than 200,000 units sold in 2012 to almost 2.4 million units in 2020.

The market is also entering a new phase, Pike notes, in which companies will be less dependent on government-funded deployments and thus required to present an attractive return on investment for potential EVSE operators. In a new Pike Pulse report, Pike evaluates 14 electric vehicle charging equipment manufacturers, and ranks ChargePoint (formerly Coulomb Technologies) and DBT as Leaders as a result of their range of feature-rich EVSE offerings, current market share, geographic reach, and vision for competing successfully in the next phase of the EVSE market. (ChargePoint and DBT USA will showcase a joint EV charging station innovation at the 2013 International Consumer Electronics Show next week in Las Vegas).

However, Pike notes, at this stage in this market’s development, it is not clear what the most viable business models are. Pike also suggests that EVSE companies will have to keep enhancing their EVSE units, reducing the cost in order to successfully compete.

The 14 electric vehicle charging equipment manufacturers in this Pike Pulse report all offer Level 2 units to residential and commercial customers, with many also offering Level 1 equipment and DC charging.

To be included in the Pike report, the EVSE companies had to:

  • sell EVSE units as individual products, not EVSE provided by an automaker with its PEV;

  • be a manufacturer, not just a service provider that purchased hardware from other companies;

  • manufacture Level 2 chargers—i.e., excluding companies that only provide DC fast chargers; and

  • be offering Level 2 chargers in at least two top 10 PEV markets or one top 10 and at least three top 11-20 countries, as defined by Pike Research in its PEV forecasts. Pike top 10 PEV markets are: Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, South Korea, United Kingdom, and United States. Pike’s top 11-20 countries are: Austria, Australia, Belgium, India, Israel, Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Sweden, and Switzerland.

The criteria for ranking were:

  • Strategy: vision, go-to-market strategy, partners, production strategy and roadmap, technical innovation, and geographic reach.

  • Execution: market share, sales and marketing, product performance and features, product portfolio and ecosystem, pricing, and staying power.

Based on the scoring on these criteria, Pike then ranks companies as Leaders, Contenders, Challengers, or Followers in the global market.

Leaders. Last year’s Pike Pulse did not include any Leaders. (Earlier post.) ChargePoint (formerly Coulomb Technologies) took the number one spot, joined now by DBT. Pike says that both companies have secured a significant level of market share, are operating in a range of critical geographic markets, are offering a wide range of feature-rich EVSE products, and demonstrate a focus on competing successfully in the next phase of the EVSE market.

Contenders. The majority of companies in the Pulse report were classified as Contenders. Contenders include many large conglomerates that have entered the EVSE space to complement their existing businesses: Eaton, Efacec, General Electric (GE), Leviton, Schneider Electric, and Siemens. These are companies that have not yet captured significant market share, but that score well in Strategy due to an ability to invest in product development and to leverage their existing distribution channels and power technologies, Pike suggests. These companies also tend to score well on Staying Power.

Other companies in this category are smaller and more focused on EVSE as a primary product: AeroVironment, Chargemaster, ClipperCreek, and ECOtality. Although these companies have initially captured higher market share than the majors, they lack the massive resources that will allow them to stay in the market even if it proves to be very slow growing, Pike cautions.

Challengers. Pike’s analysis found two Challengers: Legrand and Better Place. Legrand is just beginning to make a major play in this market and is focused more on the residential sector, while Better Place is a relative newcomer, having more recently started offering EVSE to complement its battery switching business.



If you had a proper high energy density battery available in BEVs, you would only need to remote charge while on extended trips. And, the charge stations would be located near freeways, not in front of drug stores, shopping malls etc. The level 2 charge point stations are needed now because, except for Tesla, no one builds a BEV with a long enough range. The BEVs currently marketed are all commuter cars or city cars with too short a range. Want proof? Observe how PHEV sales are starting to boom.

I see the future for charge stations as Tesla sees them; as fast charge stations between cities for distance driving. You should be able to fast charge within an hour and add another 250-300 miles of charge to get you further down the road, stop at a motel for a slower overnight charge, then charge at the next fast charge station, etc., etc., etc.

Hurry up and get that battery to market. The whole World id waiting.


PHEVs are either the bridge to long-range EVs or ends in themselves.  It doesn't matter.  PHEV technology is good enough that the remaining fuel needs can be met from biomass and refuse.  If the liquid fuel is eliminated through better batteries, electrifying the roads or not at all becomes a choice, not necessity.

The comments to this entry are closed.