May 3, 2018 / 4:06 PM / 7 months ago

Sweden's Vattenfall boosts its EV charging market with Volvo Cars deal

FILE PHOTO: An electric vehicle charging cable is seen on the bonnet of a Volvo hybrid car in this picture illustration taken July 6, 2017. REUTERS/Phil Noble/File Photo

OSLO (Reuters) - Swedish state-owned utility Vattenfall [VATN.UL] is partnering with Geely-owned Volvo Cars to help owners recharge their electric vehicles (EV) at home, the firms said on Thursday.

The move comes two weeks after Vattenfall launched plans to become northwestern Europe’s largest operator of EV-charging infrastructure within five years.

Volvo Cars’ market share for plug-in hybrid cars in its home market Sweden is now about 18 percent. The carmaker has a target for 50 percent of the cars it sells to be electric by 2025, Volvo Cars said in a joint statement with Vattenfall.

“Our strategy going forward is to focus aggressively on electrified cars. A functioning infrastructure for charging is therefore needed both in the community and where our customers live,” said Kristian Elvefors, Volvo Cars’ managing director.

About 90 percent of all electric vehicle charging takes place at work or at home, said Vattenfall.

Under the partnership, Volvo car owners can visit the carmaker’s website and order a charging box. Vattenfall would deliver, install and service the unit, a Vattenfall spokeswoman said.

Others vying for a share of the charging business include French utility Engie (ENGIE.PA), Germany’s Innogy (IGY.DE) and ChargePoint, whose owners include BMW, Daimler (DAIGn.DE) and Siemens (SIEGn.DE).

Vattenfall’s Finnish rival Fortum (FORTUM.HE) has also made several acquisitions to compete in the sector.

Editing by Edmund Blair

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