Wireless EV Charging Offers Investment Options for Financiers

  • Natalie Mattila
  • April 13, 2017
  • 0

There is a massive rush to advance mobility, beyond just traditional rideshare, and the financing beneath the mobility infrastructure has caught the attention of many major automakers and captives.

From Toyota Financial Services’s partnerships with Uber and Getaround, to General Motors Co.’s Book by Cadillac and Maven carshare programs, OEMs are making sure they remain relevant in a vastly evolving space.

However, there are other investment opportunities for the captives — beyond offering new business models like a shared-lease or subscription carshare, Mary Chan, managing partner at VectoIQ, told Mobility Buzz during a Q-and-A session at the Empire State of Mobility conference yesterday.

“Infrastructure investment, for example, wireless charging,” could be one opportunity, she said. A charging network is expensive to put in place, she explained, which could provide captives or financial institutions with another finance opportunity.

“But the day you put that infrastructure on the ground, what’s the business model, and can the financial institution come in and help with putting out an infrastructure like this?” Chan asked. “How do you monetize that with the energy company overtime?”

Startups like Boston-based WiTricity, for example, are developing wireless electric vehicle charging stations. The wireless charging pad will enable consumers to drive into a garage or parking space and have their EV charge automatically, without plugging in.

“There is opportunity for new companies to come in and build and make those investments for the future of autonomous vehicles,” Chan explained.

WiTricity teamed up with General Motors in December 2016, and most recently the startup announced in February that it is collaborating with Nissan to drive adoption of wireless EV charging systems.

Other companies offering wireless charging include Momentum Dynamics Corp. in Malvern, Pa., and Wireless Advanced Vehicle Electrification in Salt Lake City.

Those interested in learning more about the evolution of the transportation industry should join us at the second annual Auto Finance Innovation 2017 conference, May 17-18 at the Hilton Bayfront in San Diego. Visit www.autofinanceinnovation.com and to learn more.

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