14-Apr-23 Macro

Making the electric car revolution work

Charging points for electric vehicles are emerging as an increasingly interesting segment infrastructure investors should keep an eye on.

EV charging infrastructure is attracting more deal activity, but trends across countries are far from uniform

20230414_CotW_EV infrastructure_CHART_EN.png

* 2023 includes all the live transactions
** Others Includes all countries where transaction values did not exceed 500 million euros in at least one year

Sources: Infralogic, Feb 2023, DWS Investment GmbH as of 4/12/23

Already, the European Union accounts for far fewer of the world’s charging stations than its EV fleet[1]. Without significant changes to both policies and business practices, this divergence could get a lot worse. However, there are also some bright spots, as our Chart of the Week illustrates. The Netherlands stands out among European countries when it comes EV infrastructure deployment and deal-making. Despite accounting for less than a tenth of the European Union’s EV fleet, it is already home to almost a third of the EU’s charging point infrastructure[2]. By taking a forward-looking approach with an eye to future demand, the Netherlands have also created a market place for infrastructure investments. Other comparative success stories include Spain, Portugal and Poland, which favour deploying greater numbers of fast charging points since these can serve a larger number of EVs compared to slow chargers.

Similar strategies urgently need to be adopted more widely. This will require infrastructure investments not just in charging stations, but also upgrades to power distribution systems, transformers for e-mobility purposes and increased renewable power generating capacity, creating plenty of opportunities to deploy private capital. EV charging points are an especially interesting niche to keep an eye on from an infrastructure portfolio allocation perspective, due to their long-term, low volatility, defensive returns, as well as a growing secondary market.

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1. https://www.iea.org/data-and-statistics/charts/global-electric-car-stock-2010-2021

2. ACEA (June 2022). Electric cars: half of all chargers in EU concentrated in just two countries

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