Published on August 30th, 2012 | by Joshua S Hill0
European Investment Bank Supporting Electric Car Industry
The European Investment Bank announced Tuesday that it was providing electric car networks company Better Place with a €40 million loan, continuing the institution’s support for innovation and sustainable transportation.
Approximately €30 million of the proceeds will be used to finalize network deployments throughout and fund operators in Denmark, with the remaining funds going to similar projects in Israel.
“After a comprehensive due diligence process, the European Investment Bank has concluded that Better Place represents both a classic infrastructure project and a clear step towards innovative low carbon transport,” said Shai Agassi, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Better Place.
“The credit facility gives us a more flexible, balanced capital structure that allows us to expand our operations without solely relying on equity. We applaud the EIB, one of the most respected financial institutions in Europe, for taking the time to thoroughly evaluate our business model, and we look forward to continued collaboration with EIB as our European operations grow.”
The Better Place network of Battery Switch Stations throughout Denmark connect Copenhagen to Aarhus, one of the major routes in the country, allowing drivers the peace of mind to choose electric cars. Whereas, in Israel, more than half of the planned network of Battery Switch Stations are already in place.
The Battery Switch Stations are, as the name suggests, locations along major routes that allow drivers to switch specific batteries to immediately expand their electric vehicle range. These stations also provide charging stations to help facilitate the growth of the electric vehicle industry.
In Israel and Denmark combined, the company reported that it has more than 500 Renault Fluence Z.E. electric cars with switchable batteries on the roads, logging 3 million electric kilometres year-to-date during the company’s controlled launch.
“Our goal is to continue to work with European institutions and partners who share our vision for electric transport so that one day you can drive from Copenhagen to Paris in a fully electric car by switching batteries along the way,” Agassi said. “The Copenhagen-Paris corridor is 1,220 kilometers, which is about the same distance I recently drove in a trip across Israel in a Renault Fluence Z.E., switching batteries without stopping to charge.”
Source: Better Place via Business Wire