BMW has announced a strategic investment in Coulomb Technologies, the company behind the ChargePoint charging network.
ChargePoint is the largest online global charging network, operating in 14 countries.
The online network allows users to coordinate their charging via the cloud, with online payments and billing. The service is also geared towards easy operation for station owners, with full control over pricing, reservations, tracking usage and driver support. It can be used with stations from any charging station manufacturer.
The investment is a shrewd move by BMW, allowing it to expand its scope beyond simply producing electric vehicles, with the ActiveE currently testing and the BMW i3 and i8 due over the next few years.
Dr. Ulrich Quay, Managing Director of BMW i Ventures, explains: "BMW is focused on providing comprehensive services that make the charging of BMW electric vehicles a premium experience.
"ChargePoint is the largest, longest established network with a significantly advanced and mature feature set. This investment will forge a close and strategic relationship as we further our electric mobility offer.”
BMW isn't the first manufacturer to work closely with Coulomb--last year, Nissan picked the company to manage its public charger data, keeping Nissan Leaf owners up-to-date on where the nearest charging points are located.