Interview with Sytse Zuidema, CEO of NewMotion
In the last 10 years the e-mobility market has changed a lot. What were the most important changes for NewMotion in that period?
The EV driving experience has improved significantly the past 10 years and so has e-mobility itself. Range anxiety is a thing of the past thanks to the many solutions that have conquered the market. As a pioneer in e-mobility and smart charging, we developed a number of our own innovative solutions and services which convinced clients such as Arval and Daimler to choose us as their preferred EV charging partner. We not only celebrate 10 years in charging, but 10 years in charge.
For example, in 2009, the company started developing products and services around electric mobility, which was a largely unknown territory back then – there just wasn’t that many EVs but more importantly, there was nowhere to charge. When the Nissan Leaf came to the market in 2011, we bought a couple of them just to experiment and develop charging solutions. That was at a time when e-mobility was still in its infancy, charge points were hardly available, and visionaries like Elon Musk were not taken seriously. We never stopped believing in the power of e-mobility.
Since becoming a member of the Shell group in late 2017, NewMotion has become Europe’s leading provider of smart charging solutions with access to the largest roaming charge network. Just in time for our tenth anniversary, we hit a big milestone: our roaming network now consists of over 100,000 charge points in 28 European countries.
What are the benefits for companies that switch to e-mobility?
Many companies already use EVs as company cars and are electrifying their fleets. In particular, the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) plays a big part in their decision to join the e-mobility movement. When you look at maintenance costs of EVs, you will see that these are likely to be much cheaper: there are fewer number of parts in the engine and powertrain that are more prone to wear and tear in internal combustion engines. Electrifying your fleet is the smart choice in more than one way, especially when you take into account insurance costs, subsidies and tax reductions many European countries offer. Our smart chargers and charge cards give fleet managers additional insights in car usage.
Explain your smart charging solution?
Smart charging will accelerate the adoption of EVs by continuously improving the charging experience for EV drivers, while making charging infrastructure and fleet management more efficient and cost effective for businesses. Our cloud-connected charging solutions allow businesses to remotely monitor and control charge points and charging sessions. This provides them with full insights into the charging behaviour and charging costs of their EV fleet or at their location. Being cloud connected also enables our charging solutions to get better over time by over the air updates that enable new features and benefits.
For instance, our partner Daimler was looking for a solution to help their business customers to electrify their fleet in a smart and efficient way. Together we were able to provide their customers with not only the necessary advice and installation to operate the charge points, but also with our specialised online tools, which include smart EV fleet management services, such as charging access and payment controls, automatic reimbursement of charging costs and international billing and settlement makes the solution easy to operate. This smart charging offer includes access to our public charge network of over 100,000 charge points throughout Europe plus NewMotion’s range of products and services like the Group Charge App and Dynamic Power Sharing to balance the power between multiple charge points.
The overall response from the fleet owners and our partner is very positive so we look forward to replicating this in other European countries.
Smart charging solutions
E-mobility, infrastructure and services should be designed for utmost efficiency and ease of mind. As an innovator in smart charging the company offers several smart solutions to EV drivers, fleet and location managers. Electrifying a fleet provides much sense, especially when you look at the total cost of ownership, as you gain complete cost transparency. From costs per driven kilometer to insights regarding driving behavior and maintenance fees, these insights help fleet managers make informed decisions to save money and to better utilize vehicles and charge in a better way. In addition, services such as automatic reimbursement of charging costs for company car drivers offer extra comfort. This helps both drivers and companies to save time and money while providing the best charging experience.
- Smart and cloud-connected charge points: Our smart charge points are cloud-connected. This enables companies to have better control and overview of their fleets and usage data. By precisely tracking all journeys and charging sessions, the utilization of vehicles can be planned in a data-based and efficient manner.
- NewMotion app: The app gives an overview of the whole network of charge points, their location, tariffs and availability. It’s even possible to start and stop the charging process remotely with this app.
- Group Charge App: EV fleet management becomes simpler thanks to this service. The Group Charge App helps companies and their employees optimize the utilisation of the company’s charge points. It shows the availability of the charge points on site and it also notifies you of when a charge point becomes available or reminds other colleagues to move their fully charged car.
- Dynamic Power Sharing: Smart charge points are also capable to include our Dynamic Power Sharing product in order to balance the energy needs and supplies. By using this technology, grids do not need to be upgraded as power can be distributed evenly, thus positively affecting overall costs.
- Charging network and site planning: We advise on how to maximize the utilisation of the charging solutions without the need to invest in an expensive grid connection upgrade. Data from the EV drivers in a managed fleet is collected and analysed for further fleet management optimisation. We future proof the client’s charging infrastructure by providing custom made charging solutions, proactive maintenance and ongoing strategic consultation to ensure effective, efficient and scalable charging infrastructures.
How do you see EV charging in the next 10 years?
Looking at the charging behaviour of EV drivers in the last 10 years, we see that EVs are being charged 40% at home, 40% at work and 20% on-the-go. This will not change significantly in the next 10 years as battery range of EVs will improve. EVs will become the norm which leads to a change in behavior when it comes to both driving and charging. There will be less need to plan your travelling, since charging will be readily available everywhere in 2029. This will be the case for consumers but also for businesses and fleets.
We cannot exactly predict what the mobility landscape will look like in 10 or even 20 years but we will continue to shape it and lead it with innovative services and solutions. Just think about the opportunities that new technologies like Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) or Vehicle-to-Everything (V2X) offer to companies. We are already piloting these new technologies that allow EVs to become flexible energy assets by storing energy in the car’s battery and feeding it back into the grid when needed, opening up new opportunities and revenue streams for EV fleet owners.