Growth in EMEA EV charging station market will shake-up supplier base
The electric vehicle charging infrastructure market has great potential for growth in the coming years. A new report from IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., estimates that in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) the charging station market is expected to grow from less than 5,000 units to more than 4.5 million units in 10 years’ time, with sales revenues estimated to reach $10.4 billion in 2021.
This quick ramp-up is attracting a wide range of companies looking to grab a share of the market. Currently, the top three suppliers in EMEA have an estimated 54 percent share of the market. Schneider Electric at the top in Europe has double the market share of numbers two and three, Pod Point and ABB. However, this should not be viewed as the status quo.
Helena Perslow, senior market analyst at IMS Research explains: "The EMEA market has some unique characteristics which will impact the competitive environment in the future." First, Europe consists of several individual countries each with domestic suppliers trying to grab local market share. Second, the early adoption of a quick charging standard (CHAdeMO) has allowed suppliers solely focused on quick chargers to grab significant market share. Finally, utility companies play a significant role in Europe. Utility companies can own and install their own networks; which has prompted some, especially in Germany, to aggressively pursue this strategy. These large utility company tenders have created a boon in the market for small electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) suppliers.
But it won’t be plain sailing for small EVSE suppliers. Currently, it is difficult to get sufficient R.O.I for public charging stations with new, untested business models, few electric vehicles on the road, and government interest and funding dwindling. This, coupled with large multi-nationals including GE, Siemens, Schneider and Eaton entering the market in 2011, should make it more difficult for smaller domestic suppliers in the coming years. Perslow concludes: "Unless these small suppliers manage to strike a deal with an OEM to supply a specific market with home chargers, they are likely to be pushed out of the market in the next few years."