Electric vehicles

An EV charging giant may have just formed

Two key US charging networks, Blink Charging and SemaConnect, just merged.
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Blink Charging

· 3 min read

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The US EV charging industry got a teeny bit less fragmented this week. On Tuesday, Blink Charging announced that it had agreed to acquire SemaConnect for $200 million.

Why it matters: The companies are among the largest charging networks in the US, per Alternative Fuels Data Center data compiled by EVAdoption. Together, they operated over 9,000 networked L2 charging ports in the US as of June 15, making up nearly 10% of the country’s total L2 chargers.

  • L2 chargers account for 80% of public chargers in the US, while the much speedier DC fast-chargers make up the remaining 20%.
  • For context, Tesla Destination chargers, which are only open to Tesla drivers, make up 15% of public L2 ports.

Blink was founded in 1998 and went public in 2018. The company generated $9.8 million in revenue last quarter—a more than fourfold increase from a year earlier when it brought in ~$2.2 million—but it’s never broken even. Last quarter, it had a net loss of ~$15 million, up from ~$7.4 million in Q1 2021.

  • SemaConnect earned $12 million in revenue last year, per an investor presentation from this week, but its bottom line isn’t disclosed because it has operated as a private company.
  • The combined company will have more than 423,000 registered members across its network, the company claimed in the presentation.

Because SemaConnect has manufacturing facilities in Maryland, the acquisition “immediately qualifies Blink for the Buy America” initiative, the company says. That’s not just a boring bit of corporate compliance: Access to the $7.5 billion earmarked for EV chargers in the infrastructure law will, to some extent, depend on adhering to the rules set out by the initiative.

  • Given that there is a dearth of domestic suppliers of EV chargers, Blink’s newfound US-based manufacturing capacity and scale could put it in a good position to win contracts stemming from the infrastructure law.

Looking ahead…Even before this acquisition, Blink was expanding rapidly. In April, the company scooped up Electric Blue Charging, a UK-based charging company, for ~$23 million, giving it a 1,150-charger-strong foothold in the country.

Blink’s president, Brendan Jones, told us in February that the company had grown from ~40 employees in 2020 to “well over 200,” and that it was “going to grow towards 300 by the end of this year.”

Now, the combined company has 420 employees, 185 of which came from SemaConnect, per SEC filings, and its founder and CEO, Michael Farkas, told Bloomberg that even post-deal, the company is “very acquisitive.

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