As USA Today points out:
"By the end of 2016, Dutch residents will be able to use 201 fast-charging stations in a country that's a tenth the size of California, and users will never be more than 31 miles away from a station."
FastNed Quick Charging Network In Netherlands
The quick-charge station build out in the Netherlands comes courtesy of Fastned. Michiel Langezaal, co-founder of Fastned, stated:
"We want to give electric vehicle drivers real freedom to go anywhere. Public initiatives often focus first on the needs of the electrical grid, secondly on the needs of the planet and then on the consumer. We're doing it the other way around. We're asking, 'What would the driver want?' first."
If you're never more than 31 miles from a fast charger, then that "real freedom to go anywhere" becomes real.
USA Today continues:
"To date, it's also the most populated country to build such a dense network: Japan's is vastly scattered, Estonia's is smaller and Norway uses slower chargers. But what makes the Dutch project unique is that it's a privately funded collaboration between Fastned and ABB, a charger manufacturer."
But it's a costly project. That's for sure. According to USA Today, each of the 201 Fastned sites cost $270,000 to build. That works out to $55 million-ish all in, of which somehow Fastned pays only $5.5 million or so, according to USA Today.
Fastned charges $137 per month for use of its stations or around $14 per full charge. So far, only 9 stations are operational and Fastned is losing lots of money. Fastned believes that once 50 stations are in operation and usage grows, the loses will turn into profits, but that remains to be seen.
In ther Netherlands, the 2020 goal is to have 200,000 EVs on the road. As Langezaal states:
"If these come to charge at least once a week in a Fastned station, we'll make roughly a 100 million in revenue a year."
Fastned takes the long-term approach and remains hopeful that EVs sales continue to follow the upward trend. For Fastned, the money invest today should result in high profits by the end of the decade, but if electric vehicle sales somehow manage to decline, then Fastned's investment may never pay off.
It's risk versus reward. Fastned is willing to take on the risk in hope of BIG rewards.
Source: USA Today