Coulomb Technologies has raised another $47.5 million to expand operations and further grow its network of electric vehicle (EV) charging stations.
The ChargePoint® cloud-based system is the largest network of independently owned charging stations in the world.
Google is among the companies installing Coulomb charging stations. With over 300 on its headquarters campus, it’s the largest workplace network in the world.
Braemar Energy Ventures and Kleiner Perkins lead the financing and are joined by Toyota Tsusho Corp. and existing investors Rho Ventures, Voyager Capital, Siemens Venture Capital, Harbor Pacific Capital Partners and Hartford Ventures.
Scott DePasquale from Braemar and Michael Linse from Kleiner Perkins are now on Coulomb’s Board of Directors.
"Our new investors bring a wealth of industry acumen and expertise in driving commercial scale around innovative technologies," says Pat Romano, CEO. "These funds enable us to provide cloud-based solutions to cities, retailers, employers, parking operators and property managers that will drive the adoption of clean transportation and further solidify our position as the market leader."
Coulomb works with automobile manufacturers including Nissan, BMW, Ford, GM, and Fisker Automotive to help their customers easily find, reserve and pay for EV charging services.
By offering cloud-based services, mobile applications and vehicle telematics, station owners can manage their charging services, including the ability to track station use and energy costs, set pricing, process payments and provide driver support.
The network uses smartcards for identifying customers at charging stations, and an online portal gives customers remote access to charging information and electricity costs.
The network also provides directions to the nearest available charging station, 24/7 driver telephone assistance, e-mail or text message alerts for "charging session interruption" or "charging completed", and individual driver portals to track energy usage and greenhouse gas savings.
ChargePoint is open to all electric vehicle drivers, half of which use it in the US.
"Coulomb delivers EV charging solutions that go beyond simply providing charging stations," said Scott DePasquale, partner at Braemar Energy Ventures. "Coulomb was the first company to develop and patent networked EV charging solutions. Their approach holistically addresses the business needs in each distinct segment of the market."
The Dept of Energy (DOE) gave Coulomb a $15 million cost-shared grant under the Recovery Act and by May 2011, it installed the 500th charging station, on its way to 4500. DOE’s project is the largest deployment of charging stations in the world.
Coulomb’s global online charging network currently connects EV drivers to 6,500 charging stations in 14 countries and cloud-based service plans handle all driver billing and support. The Network is dispensing over 462 megawatt hours of energy each month, with drivers plugging in for more than 2600 charging sessions a day.
The company is a member of the CEO-level "EV Strategic Council" that’s working to make the San Francisco Bay Area the "EV Capital of the U.S." And among 200 private companies that are "pushing the greentech community forward into tomorrow’s clean world."
Competitors include Better Place, ECOtality and now NRG, which is building a network of charging stations across California.
Here’s the ChargePoint network: