Australia’s largest motoring groups have taken full ownership of the country’s biggest EV charging network, Chargefox, a move which is expected to provide the capital for a massive rollout of fast charging stations across the country.
The motoring groups, or mobility clubs, including the NRMA, RACV, RACQ, RAC, RAA and RACT, already owned 40 percent of Chargefox through their trade group Australian Motoring Services (AMS).
The groups’ immediate goal is to double the number of plugs around the country to 5,000 over the next three years.
“We have hit a tipping point with the change in federal government and the positive attitude to EVs,” Chargefox CEO and co-founder Marty Andrews told The Driven. “This is the next step—the motoring groups will provide the capital and membership, and our goals will take a big step forward.”
Andrews will remain as CEO and the ChargeFox team will largely remain the same.
The Driven notes that ownership of a charging network by driver advocacy groups is a unique arrangement. Elsewhere in the world, most networks are owned by automakers (Tesla), for-profit companies (Chargepoint, Blink, EV Connect) or, increasingly, by oil companies (bp, Shell).
“Australia is not immune to the global transition away from fossil fuels, and we must make significant steps now to ensure the nation is not left behind—this is why today’s investment by Australia’s motoring clubs is so important,” Rohan Lund, CEO of the NRMA Group, told The Driven. “Between us we represent over 8.5 million motorists nationwide and they are looking to their motoring clubs to show leadership in this space. The acquisition of Chargefox by the NRMA and its sister clubs is just the latest in a series of significant steps taken by the NRMA to help lead this transition.”