Belfast-based electric vehicle (EV) company Weev will launch a major charging point rollout, backed by £50m with support from Octopus Investments.
Weev is looking to address what it sees as a critical shortage of EV facilities in Northern Ireland, which according to the Department for Transport has a much lower supply of charge points – 20 per 100,000 people – than the UK average of 60.
“Consumers and fleet operators are now thinking more seriously than ever before about switching to an EV to unlock significant cost savings and reduce their carbon footprint,” said Weev CEO Philip Rainey.
“We are helping to enable this switch by breaking down barriers such as range anxiety through access to convenient and reliable EV chargers. This investment from Octopus enables a major expansion to the size and scope of the rollout we announced at launch last year.”
The investment marks the first use of the Octopus Sustainable Infrastructure Fund (OSIF), a strategy from the group announced last year to back next-generation infrastructure projects.
“Weev is the perfect example of the next generation of infrastructure companies doing just that. By backing Weev, we see a great opportunity to deliver a positive impact to Northern Ireland’s communities while meeting the financial objectives of the fund,” said Lukasz Michalak, investment director, sustainable infrastructure, at Octopus.
“We have great confidence in the Weev team. Not only have they previously been in charge of various successful infrastructure businesses in Northern Ireland, but they also share our ethos of putting the customer first.”
The plan is an extension of a £20m charging point rollout announced by Weev last year.