French oil major takes over Source London EV network after acquisition of Blue Point London from the Bolloré Group
Total is set to take over operation of London's largest electric vehicle charging network, after today announcing it has completed the acquisition of Blue Point London, the EV charging arm of French transportation firm Bolloré Group.
Launched in 2010, the Source London EV network currently comprises around 1,600 on-street charge points, which makes up more than half of the UK capital's network, all of which will now be managed by Total as the French oil giant wades yet further into the green economy. The firm has also committed to providing 100 per cent renewable electricity for the Source London charge points via its energy subsidary Total Gas & Power.
It marks just the latest move into the rapidly growing EV sector from Total which already operates and installs charge points in Amsterdam and Brussels. The firm is has set a target to operate 150,000 charge points in major cities across Europe by 2025.
"By combining today these existing infrastructures with Total's know-how in terms of installation, operation and management of public electric vehicle charging networks, we are starting a new phase, supporting the expansion of electric mobility in London." said Alexis Vovk, president, marketing and services at Total. "In collaboration with our partners and the local authorities, we will be able to meet both the strong growth in demand for on-street charge points and the needs for new mobility solutions of London users."
The announcement came alongside a seperate survey released today by facilities management and professional services company Mitie, which found 91 per cent of its drivers that use EV were positive about the company's transfer to the technology, and that 62 per cent would now consider switching their household car to run on battery power.
The company has been rolling out electric vehicles throughout its fleet, and the results come from its second annual survey of both its EV drivers and those on the waiting list to switch, which highlighted the biggest benefits among EV drivers as financial savings, reducing impact on the environment, improved driving experience and enhanced technological features.
But while the experiences for Mitie drivers was "overwhelmingly positive", nearly half of those surveyed had faced issues regarding the accessibility of public charging points, such as a lack of infrastructure in areas with no off-street parking, and difficulties in locating rapid chargers, according to the firm.
Simon King, director of sustainability and social value at Mitie, said the findings demonstrated "once again" that charge point availability remains a barrier for many to driving an EV. "With charging infrastructure receiving just a fraction of the investment that is spent on our road network, we now need a national approach with more investment from government and local authorities - especially for communal and on-street parking," he said.
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