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In brief: Verdane takes a ‘strategic position’ amid the EV charging ‘hype’

Verdane has backed an electric vehicle charging services company that ‘is not strategic for the really large corporate actors in this space to own’.

“There is a lot of competition for growth-stage companies in electric vehicle-related technologies,” Reed Snyder, investment director at Verdane, tells New Private Markets.

Verdane announced its first deal in this space last week – it has taken a minority stake in EVA Global, an EV charging managed services company, from its recently-closed €300 million impact fund. “You might be tempted to back a highly valued company that may not have a strong strategic position in a couple of years’ time,” said Snyder. To avoid this, Verdane took its time looking at the space: “We had been looking at the EV charging space for over three or four years now.

“We looked at what automotive companies are going to do in a few years’ time,” said Snyder. EVA’s focus on managed services for EV charging infrastructure is “targeting a segment of this space… that we don’t think it is strategic for the really large corporate actors in this space to own”.

EQT is another investor that has been targeting later-stage EV charging companies. EQT’s infrastructure vehicle is set to acquire EV charging operator InstaVolt, the firm announced today. InstaVolt was founded in 2016 and operates almost 700 charge points.

In related news, on Monday Verdane announced an investment alongside sustainability-minded private equity firm FSN Capital in Active Brands, which owns a number of outdoor clothing and equipment marks. Verdane did not disclose whether the investment was made from its impact vehicle.