The mission of California-based startup EVmatch, a charging solution provider that was profiled in the latest issue of Charged, is to make charging stations more readily available to EV drivers. The company offers two solutions: a peer-to-peer sharing platform that makes private chargers available to the public; and a subnetwork platform, which allows a customer to create a small EVmatch network within their property. This enables multi-family dwellings, such as apartments or condo associations, to easily process payments and make reservations.
EVmatch is now testing its subnetwork platform through pilot projects with two Vermont utilities: Green Mountain Power and the Burlington Electric Department.
“EVmatch presented a solution that is of particular relevance to our customers,” said Burlington Electric Department General Manager Darren Springer. “We serve 17,000 residential customers, 60 percent of whom are renters. This platform offers an affordable and logistically simple way for property owners to make EV charging available to multi-family residences.”
Burlington Electric currently has 15 charging stations in the Burlington area. The EVmatch pilot will create 16 new charging stations in 2020, with a focus on multi-family residences.
The EVmatch platform works for those customers by offering a manager (property owner or homeowners association) an app-based program that allows residents to reserve and pay for charging time. Because the platform runs on WiFi, it’s less expensive than alternatives that run on cellular and use RFID technology for payments. The property owner can also choose to make the chargers available to the public when not being used by residents, for example, during the work day, and to charge different rates to residents and the public.
Green Mountain Power already has two EVmatch-enabled charging stations in operation at a condo complex near Mount Snow. “Small businesses, condos and multi-family dwellings are a huge unmet need in Vermont,” said Green Mountain Power’s Graham Turk. “EVmatch allows a ‘subnetwork’ of users – in this case, residents or employees – to easily reserve and pay for charging through the app.”
Burlington Electric and Green Mountain Power are both founding partners in DeltaClimeVT, an accelerator program that attracts climate economy start-ups from around the country.
“Working with utilities is an important component of testing and growing our platform,” said EVmatch founder and CEO Heather Hochrein. “Through DeltaClimeVT we were able to discuss, troubleshoot and test real-world situations that are applicable not only to Vermont, but to rural, middle-income states around the country.”