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Volkswagen Group invests in Hubject eRoaming platform for EV charging

The Volkswagen Group is joining the eRoaming platform Hubject GmbH as shareholder. Hubject, a joint venture formed by BMW Group, Bosch, Daimler AG, EnBW, innogy and Siemens (earlier post), launched its eRoaming EV charging platform “intercharge” in 2013.

With the strategic investment in the Berlin-based company, Europe’s largest car maker will push ahead with the digital interconnection of charging stations for electric vehicles starting in early 2017 as well as the expansion and internationalization of Hubject GmbH together with the founding shareholders.

One of the requirements for increasing acceptance of e-mobility—apart from an attractive range of models—is a well-developed charging infrastructure with an international payment system that is as simple as possible. Hubject provides EV drivers with easy access to charging stations as well as payment solutions. Almost 40,000 charge points on three continents are already available on this platform. With more than 240 partners, the Hubject eRoaming platform is the largest international digital B2B marketplace for electric vehicle charging services today.

The Hubject intercharge is a cross-provider and cross-border solution for charging electric vehicles through its own eRoaming platform in order to interconnect isolated solutions of the charging infrastructure.

Hubject does not operate any charging stations itself, but enables the smooth exchange of data in the background via the intercharge charging network. Electric car owners can search, find and charge their vehicles across the network using their GPS device or smartphone. The Hubject platform is also introducing new services such as the digital networking of parking sensors and intercarrier reserving of charging stations.

Sensors in the immediate vicinity of the charging station register whether a parking space in front of a charging station is occupied by a car or not. The sensors detect vehicles with combustion engines as well as electrically powered cars that are blocking these parking spaces.

Drivers of electric vehicles will prospectively be able to determine in advance whether to approach a charging station to recharge their car. The real-time connection between the sensors and the Hubject system transmits the status of both systems to the navigation systems and charging station maps of companies within the partner network, and this information is directly displayed to EV drivers. The service enhances planning security when approaching charging stations and thus the customer-friendliness of the charging process.

Charge point operators within the intercharge network who already use parking sensors or plan to in the future can offer the status data for parking spaces in front of their stations to all emobility service providers within the intercharge network via Hubject’s eRoaming platform as an added-value service for their customers. Charge point operators are not committed to a specific sensor manufacturer.

We are pleased that our open and 100% digital market model is bearing fruit. This has allowed us to more than quadruple the number of charge points available on our platform. In particular, this benefits electric car drivers, who have more and more charging stations at their disposal.

—Thomas Daiber, Managing Director of Hubject GmbH

By investing in the eRoaming market leader Hubject, the Volkswagen Group is emphasizing its commitment to making e-mobility available to the mass-market and to systematically expanding the infrastructure.

We have set our sights on becoming a globally leading provider in the field of sustainable mobility. With our investment in Hubject we are supporting the digital transformation and making an important contribution to the transition to the era of e-mobility.

—Thomas Sedran, Head of Group Strategy at Volkswagen AG

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