Currently reading: Gridserve acquires Ecotricity Electric Highway EV charging network
Gridserve will invest heavily in the network, replacing all existing chargers with new tech
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2 mins read
9 June 2021

Green energy firm Ecotricity has sold its Electric Highway charging network to sustainable energy business Gridserve

The Electric Highway was the world’s first national charging network and played an important role in supporting the shift to electric cars in the UK, with chargers installed all over the country. 

The sale comes after Gridserve and Ecotricity recently announced a partnership, with the goal of upgrading the UK’s charging infrastructure. 

“It’s a real honour for Gridserve to have been chosen by Ecotricity as the organisation to take the Electric Highway forward in its next phase,” said Toddington Harper, Gridserve CEO.

“Our purpose is to deliver sustainable energy and move the needle on climate change, and the upgraded network will provide the confidence for millions more people to make the successful transition to electric vehicles in the earliest possible timeframes,” Harper said. 

According to Gridserve, the sale will allow Ecotricity to advance its core green energy business, bringing forward several solar and battery storage projects to be built without government support. 

Some Ecotricity innovations include Britain’s first Green Gasmill, which involves making natural gas from grass, and Sky Mining, a carbon capture and storage process that turns carbon dioxide in the atmosphere into diamonds. 

Gridserve has already invested heavily in the UK’s charging infrastructure, having opened the country’s first bespoke electric car forecourt in Essex last year. The company said investment will continue, including replacing all existing chargers in the network with more advanced options with contactless payment.

“The Electric Highway needs a growth spurt,” said Dale Vince, Ecotricity founder. “For this, the Electric Highway needs an owner with access to serious funding and real commitment to the cause. I’m delighted to have found the ideal company to hand the baton to, in Gridserve.”

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bol 10 June 2021

This is potentially the game changer we've been waiting for. In fairness to Dale Vance, Ecotricity was never going to have the funding necessary to achieve what people wanted and what Gridserve and Hitachi Capital can do. I'm really glad he held out for an organisation with the right values and ambition (as well as cash), rather than selling up to Shell or BP. If Braintree and the forecourt being built in Norwich at the moment - or the speed wifh which they're already transforming the old Ecotricity sites are anything to go by, there is a hope that the infrastructure will cope with the exponential growth in EVs over the coming years. 

oop north 10 June 2021

I think Mr Vince meant to say "I am delighted that failing to develop the sites in any meaningful way and just sitting on them has enabled me to flog them for £40m". Have to say I expected this or something like it to happen for a couple of years - all those motorway sites begging for a serious operator to take them over. It seemed obvious to me that Ecotricity were just waiting until someone coughed up some cash

The Apprentice 9 June 2021

Desperately needed, stuck with often broken, outdated 50kw chargers. Until a LOT more infrastructure gets put out, I would only consider a Tesla with its 150kw+ superchargers and its penalty system if people hog the charger after finishing (5 minutes grace) meaning fast and available facilities.