BP today announced the acquisition of Chargemaster, one of the UK's leading electric charge point businesses. This isn't a major surprise given Shell's acquisition of NewMotion and the Government's push towards hybrid and electric vehicles.
The Government recently announced that all new vehicles sold in the UK will need to have some form of electric augmentation by 2040, either full electric or mild hybrid. This is another step towards an electric mobility future. However, infrastructure will remain the key blocker in rolling out this strategy. Today's acquisition is an example of the recognition by the oil majors that the future for traditional internal combustion engines looks bleak, albeit probably not for another 10-20 years. We expect more deals of this nature to occur over the coming years as the UK prepares for an alternatively fuelled mobility future.
Oil giant BP is buying the UK's largest electric charging network, Chargemaster, for £130m. BP runs 1,200 petrol forecourts, but said earlier this year it expected renewable energy to be the fastest-growing fuel source. It said the number of electric vehicles in the UK is set to grow from 135,000 at present to 12 million by 2040. The move echoes one made last year by rival Shell, which bought car charging company NewMotion. All leading car manufacturers are moving into electric vehicle production. Volkswagen, the world's biggest carmaker, has said it will offer an electric version of all its 300 models by 2030.