In a recent press release, LG announced that it is moving into the EV charging station business with the acquisition of AppleMango.
Together with GS Energy and GS Neotek, an energy services company and a related IT service provider, LG purchased the EV charging station company to basically put together a complete package of services. With LG’s electronics, EV, and battery expertise, GS Energy’s energy market and electrical utility experience, and GS Neotek’s IT experience, they’ll be able to work as a “one stop shop” for people looking to install EV charging stations.
“The EV charging market is expected to grow rapidly due to the surging demand for more eco-friendly vehicles,” said Paik Ki-mun, senior vice president of LG Electronics Business Solutions Company. “Leveraging our know-how and experience in the B2B sector, we will offer customized, integrated vehicle charging solutions for diverse customers, enhancing the competitiveness of our existing business and ensuring our readiness for future opportunities.”
What makes AppleMango a particularly good buy, and a great place for four companies to team up, are the innovative stations AppleMango has put together. If you’ve ever been around EV charging stations, especially those that aren’t Tesla Superchargers, you’ve probably seen your share of big, thick boxes. Some are more aesthetically-pleasing than others, but something about as beautiful as a utility cabinet is common. AppleMango’s stations tend to be a lot slimmer and more aesthetically-pleasing while offering a decent customer experience with a big display and software.
Later this year, LG is going to use what they’ve picked up with this purchase to start a new charging station production line at LG Digital Park in South Korea. This will enable the company to make custom charging stations optimized for different charging contexts. Houses, apartments, hotels, public institutions, shopping malls, hotels, and many other places where EV charging makes sense will be able to get a station that’s built from the ground up for unique needs that come with each place.
What we don’t know at this point is where they intend to sell LG-branded charging stations going forward. The South Korean market alone is going to be hot, and nearby countries, like, say, the most populated country on the planet, will also have great demand for charging stations as EV adoption continues. But, if history is any indication, LG has proven to be quite adept at selling its products and services globally. Seeing LG/AppleMango chargers in Europe and the Americas seems pretty likely to me.
The other thing we don’t know yet is what specifications and power levels will be available from the partnership. It seems obvious that they’ll be working with both Level 2 (220-volt) and Level 3 (DC Fast Charging), but we don’t know what kind of speeds they’ll be offering. This will obviously vary based on what charging context they’re optimizing for, as someone watching a movie at a movie theater has a couple of hours to get a charge, while someone driving an electric pickup down the highway will need a lot of power, and fast.
Whatever their offerings come out to, we’ll be keeping an eye out and will let readers know as the new products are announced.
Images provided by LG.
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