With a goal to open 1000 fast-charging stations for electric vehicles to charge with renewable energy from the sun and wind, Amsterdam-based fast-charging network for electric vehicles company, Fastned, has raised €17M in a fresh round of funding with the issue of bonds.
Also, the company has raised additional funds of €4M from earlier issues. This brings the total raised amount in this round to €21M. All newly-issued bonds will mature in November 2025.
A company spokesperson tells Silicon Canals that the raised capital will help Fastned to further expand its network capacity by adding more stations, as well as add more chargers at its existing stations.
“It’s great to see so many people investing in the energy transition. With the proceeds from this bond issue, we can further expand the capacity of our network. Fast charging infrastructure gives freedom to electric drivers and accelerates the transition towards sustainable mobility,” says Michiel Langezaal, CEO of Fastned.
Founded in 2012 by Michiel Langezaal and Bart Lubbers, Fastned is a Dutch company with an aim to accelerate the transition to electric mobility by giving freedom to electric drivers.
The company owns and operates a network of electric vehicle charging stations in the Netherlands, Germany, and the UK – the majority of its stations are located at Dutch highway rest areas. So far, it has built 129 fast-charging stations in the Netherlands, Germany, the United Kingdom, and Belgium.
Besides, Fastned is working on expansion into France and Switzerland. The company specialises in developing and operating fast-charging infrastructure where drivers can charge their electric vehicle with up to 300 km of range in 15 minutes before continuing their journey.
It has over 70 employees, and about 40 people in Amsterdam, across 6 markets and is also listed on Euronext Amsterdam (Euronest is the largest stock exchange in Europe).
From 22nd October to 19th November, investors could subscribe to the bonds with 6% interest and a maturity of 5 years.
Additionally, an offer was made to investors with bonds maturing in December 2021, June 2022, and December 2022 to extend their investments by exchanging these older bonds for bonds in this new issue.
Including earlier extensions, this has reduced the repayment obligation for Fastned in 2021 and 2022 by more than €6.5M.
Earlier in October, Fastned and Tesla joined forces to open Germany’s largest fast-charging hub in Seed & Greet open Ladepark Kreuz Hilden. The hub has a cafe, a large Tesla Supercharger station, and a large Fastned charging station. Fastned has 8 fast charging stalls and Tesla’s Supercharger station has 20 Supercharging stalls, bringing the current total for the hub to 28 stalls.
Also in October, Fastned opened its first fast-charging station in Belgium. The new station is located close to the international airport of Ostend-Bruges, where electric drivers can add up to 300 km range in 15 minutes, with electricity from the sun and wind.
According to the company, Fastned has grown revenues related to charging by 54% in the third quarter of 2020 compared to the same quarter in 2019. Fastned’s sales rebounded from lock-down related lows in March earlier this year. Further growth was hampered because many drivers of electric vehicles were still working from home, it says.
Key numbers shared by the company:
- Revenue related to charging: € 1.6M (+54% vs. Q3 2019)
- Volume: 2.9 GWh of renewable energy delivered (+50% vs. Q3 2019)
- Active customers Q3 2020: 47,213 (+53% vs. Q3 2019)
- Over 167K charging sessions
- 2.25 million kg of CO2 avoided
- 14.3 million electric kilometers enabled
In July, Fastned raised over €13M with the issue of bonds. In addition, investors have exchanged €2.7M worth of bonds from earlier issues.
Image credit: Fastned
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Unemployment has been on the rise in Sweden since the COVID-19 pandemic! According to a report, the unemployment rate reached 9.2% as of September 2020, from 6% in the same period last year.
Restart the future
In a bid to create jobs and growth, fourteen of Sweden’s leading companies have come together to build 1000 new companies in the next couple of years, under the ‘Restart the Future‘ initiative.
Founded by Antler, this one-year initiative has the backing of 13 partner companies: Ericsson, Carnegie, Stena, Nordea, Amazon Web Services, Max Matthiessen, ARC, Ramboll, Lannebo Fonder, Werlabs, Mavenir, Mondial, and Baker McKenzie.
“We are standing in front of a huge opportunity. Now more than ever, we need to back innovative and creative entrepreneurs to build companies and to create new jobs. Encouraging entrepreneurship will help us build an even more robust economy. Sweden is full of innovative and creative entrepreneurs. With the right support, investment, and encouragement, these entrepreneurs can build world-leading businesses,” says Livia Moore, Associate Partner at Antler.
The initiative’s work falls into three categories:
The Launch Academy
The fully digital entrepreneurship school called the Launch Academy consists of a five-week online academy, on how to identify and validate a problem and solution, build a strong founding team, create an MVP and go-to-market strategy, analyse the business model, and raise capital.
The Academy will include masterclasses, fireside chats with founders such as Daniel Kjellén (CEO/founder Tink), and digital meetups. The next academy starts on January 12, 2021.
- Application opens – November 16
- Seats – unlimited
- The course begins – January 11
Who can join: Anyone who wants to learn the ropes of building companies – students as well as professionals.
It’s a competition for founders with business ideas that impact positively on the world. A jury consisting of representatives from the partner companies will select 10 winners. It will be launching in Spring 2021.
The winners will be offered strategic one-on-one coaching by leaders such as Linnea Kornehed, co-founder Einride, Hjalmar Winbladh, serial entrepreneur, Anna König Jerlmyr, mayor of Stockholm, and Ash Pournouri, founder of Brilliant Minds, as well as by domain experts within the partner companies.
Scale Up Support
Existing startups can apply for ‘Scale up Support’ to scale. In this case, founders get coaching from experienced advisors, experts, and founders through the Restart the Future network.
Throughout the entire year, masterclasses and panel discussions will be opened up to the general public in an effort to share business insights and know-how from the network broadly.
Restart the Future is also collaborating with 30 organisations such as Stockholm.AI, :Part, European Space Agency, och Geek Girl Meetup who support the mission and will engage their members in the initiative.
Salman Taj, Interim Head of Ericsson ONE, says that “In today’s fast-changing, digital world, disruption is the norm and those who innovate constantly will succeed. At Ericsson ONE, we are betting on the entrepreneurial spirit to make real innovation happen. Our mission is to create game-changers by unlocking intrapreneurs and innovators, shaping the future together. We believe the next big innovation or new business will come from our entrepreneurial employees and we are here to support them and provide them a platform to excel.”
Main image credits: Restart the Future
COVID-19 has deeply impacted the economy and forced numerous businesses to shut shop. Some of the bigger businesses, such as Dutch banking group ING, have also reported a dip in their quarterly YoY profits. In their latest Q3 2020 net results, the company posted net profit of €788M, which is almost half the €1.4bn reported it reported last year in Q3. As a result, the company is closing down some of its branches in various regions and cutting down on staff numbers.
ING to close its offices in several regions
The first step ING is taking to refocus its efforts is to shift its aim to activities that ensure faster client delivery and improving end-to-end digital customer experience. In the company’s Wholesale Banking sector, this will result in shifting focus on core clients and ‘simplifying’ the company’s geographical footprint. The bank will thus close down its wholesale banking offices in South America and Asia. Additionally, it will also downsize integration operations in several EU countries and let go of about 1,000 jobs.
Cutting down to further the goal of a digital universal bank
ING is inclined to work on its vision of a digital universal bank and will focus on three main criteria for this. The first one is how the company’s technology foundation is used worldwide. This includes its shared data lakes, cloud and modular IT building blocks that enable the company to re-use components where possible. The bank will also focus on the rollout of global digital product offerings in insurance, investments and consumer lending.
ING will also considerably reduce the scope of its programme Maggie, which launched to deliver a standardised customer experience and integrate the product offering in four of the company’s European Challenger countries. “The change in Maggie’s scope has led to an impairment of €140 million, primarily related to capitalised software development costs. The refocusing of our wholesale and retail activities will result in a headcount reduction of approximately 1,000 FTEs by year-end 2021,” says Steven van Rijswijk, CEO of ING Group.
Image Credits: Shutterstock