Monday, August 5, 2019

Black Woman-Led Company is Charging Europe

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Global -- International  Electric cars are quickly becoming reality, and companies charging them are in the spotlight.

The recent announcement of EFACEC's 58 million Euro bond issue has shone the spotlight on one of Portugal's largest companies that has been increasingly visible in European media.

EFACEC Power Solutions is Portugal's largest energy, engineering, and mobility companies, and is a global presence in its market, especially in the field of charging infrastructure for electric vehicles.  Last month, the company made headlines with its deal to supply 90 of its HV350 ultra-fast chargers across Central Europe.

Reporting on the deal, one industry website said the charger could "provide charging speeds of up to 30km a minute, which is seven times faster than today's 50kW DC chargers. It has the ability to charge 100km in less than five minutes, meaning it solves many charging anxiety issues faced by today's EV [electric vehicle] owners and presents a viable solution to intercontinental travel."

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EFACEC was contracted by Allego, a Dutch company founded in 2013 that provide charging stations across Europe. As of 2019, electric mobility comprised 6% of EFACEC's total activity.

Company CEO Angelo Ramalho said the deal was "an important milestone for EFACEC," adding that he wanted to continue growth in the central and northern European markets.

News of the deal came hot on the heels of the company's announcement in May that it was participating in the construction of the largest biogas plant in Europe in Denmark.

The next two years will be a tipping point for electric cars in Europe, according to a report by Transport and Environment. The NGO said electric vehicle production will increase six-fold between 2019 and 2025, and the number of electric models available on the market will triple in the next three years. Efacec's portfolio is organized into three segments: Energy products, systems and Electric Mobility and eight business units.

As electric cars become the norm, the shakers and players in the charging industry will become increasingly publicly visible. Expect to hear more from EFACEC in the near future.

In late 2015, Winterfell Industries, which is controlled by Isabel dos Santos, acquired the majority stake in EFACEC. Dos Santos is Africa's richest woman owing to her business acumen. She pivoted EFACEC towards a long-term interest in technological innovation. Originally from Angola, she is the only African woman to have invested extensively in Portugal, the former colonial power in her country. These investments focus on long-term stability, value creation, human capacity building, and job creation.

Dos Santos was quick to leave her mark on EFACEC. The company closed the 2017 fiscal year with 431.7 million Euros, and the following year was ranked among the top five recognized brands in the energy and utility sector.

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