French startup Bump has signed a multi-year financing partnership with DIF Capital Partners to build more charging stations for electric vehicles and double growth in general.
It is an equity and quasi-equity $180 million deal that will be unlocked progressively from 2022 to 2030. Yesterday, ZePlug also announced a significant investment – but ZePlug will focus on a different market with partnerships with residential and office buildings.
Today’s news is important because Bump operates with a capital intensive business model. The company has already created 300 charging stations and plans to ship another 2,000 charging stations by the end of 2023.
Bump funds and manages the installation of new charging stations so that their partners have no upfront cost. After that, the company manages and operates. This takes a cut on the kWh, which in turn covers the investment costs and generates some revenue for the company.
Like solar panels, it can take 5, 10 or 15 years for a charging station to become profitable. It is an infrastructure company, which means it is a long-term business.
Bump has two types of clients. It has partnered with various companies that own parking lots to create charging stations for retailers, malls, hotels and anyone looking for a charging station.
It also works with logistics companies and other B2B clients that need to switch to electric vehicles. They get their own charging spots for their vehicles operated by Bump. Clients include Starservice, Topchrono, Stuart, Europcar, GT, Bolt and Marcel.
“I compare our offering to Salesforce in the 2000s,” co-founder and CEO Francois Oudot told me. “You can buy a server and a floppy disk or pay a monthly subscription per user.”
It is true that switching to electric vehicles is very costly. You have to buy new cars and trucks – electric vehicles are more expensive than gas vehicles. You have to pay the construction company to install the charging stations.
Vehicles should not be a major investment for logistics companies. Many companies choose to lease cars and pay a little more to charge their vehicles if they don’t have to do anything to maintain their charging stations.
Bump itself works with large construction companies to install charging stations. They have their own software stack and a team that can remotely monitor charging stations. If it’s a hardware issue, third-party companies can also be reached 24/7 when they have to personally go there to fix something.
With today’s new funding, Bump plans to roll out 25,000 charging stations by 2030. This startup will also hire 100 people.