French startup Boom has signed a multi-year funding partnership with DIF Capital Partners to roll out more electric vehicle charging stations and double down on growth overall.
This is a $180 million equity and quasi-equity deal that will be phased in from 2022 to 2030. Yesterday ZePlug also announced a significant investment — but ZePlug focuses on a different market with partnerships with residential and office buildings.
Today’s news is extremely important because Bump operates on a capital-intensive business model. The company has already set up 300 charging stations and plans to deliver another 2,000 charging stations by the end of 2023.
It raises funds and manages the installation of new charging stations so that there is no upfront cost to their partners. The company then deals with maintenance and operation. After that, the kWh is reduced, which gradually covers the investment costs and creates some income for the company.
Like solar panels, it can take 5, 10 or 15 years before a charging station becomes profitable. It’s an infrastructure company, which means it’s a long-term business.
Bump has two types of customers. It partners with retailers, malls, hotels and various companies that own parking spaces to roll out charging stations for anyone looking for a charging station.
It also works with logistics companies and other B2B customers who need to switch to electric vehicles. They get their own charging stations for their Bump-driven vehicles. Customers include StarService, TopChrono, Stuart, Europcar, Zity, Bolt and Marcel.
“I often compare our offerings to Salesforce in the 2000s,” co-founder and CEO Francois Oudeau told me. “You can either buy a server and a floppy disk, or you can pay a monthly subscription per user.”
And it’s true that switching to electric vehicles can be expensive. You have to buy new cars and trucks – electric vehicles tend to be more expensive than gas-powered ones. Then you have to pay a construction company to install charging stations.
Vehicles should not be a major investment for logistics companies. Many companies choose to lease cars and would rather pay a little more to charge their vehicles if they don’t have to do anything to operate their charging stations.
Bump itself works with major construction companies to install charging stations. They have their own software stack and a team that can remotely monitor the charging stations. If it’s a hardware issue, third-party companies are also reachable 24/7 in case they need to go there in person to fix something.
With today’s new funding, Bump plans to roll out 25,000 charging stations by 2030. The startup will also hire a hundred people.