Hitachi Capital UK has made another investment into GRIDSERVE, cementing the partnership between the two.
The new £10 million investment reflects Hitachi’s confidence in GRIDSERVE, it said, having funded over £24 million in GRIDSERVE projects in 2020. This includes the Braintree Electric Forecourt, which opened in December and allows 36 electric vehicles (EVs) to be charged simultaneously using 350kW chargers.
GRIDSERVE is intending to open 100 such sites as part of a £1 billion programme, with Hitachi stating its partnership with the company will help accelerate the adoption of EVs as well as help to revolutionise the UK’s approach to solar energy.
The first of GRIDSERVE’s hybrid solar farms was completed in York in 2019, and was celebrated as the UK’s first use of single-axis trackers and bifacial panels. It also houses a 27MW battery.
Alongside supporting GRIDSERVE’s EV work, the first bout of funding from Hitachi – announced in April 2020 – was set to also help develop two hybrid solar farms in Gloucestershire and Lincolnshire.
Hitachi’s investments into the company are aligned with its wider vision of financially supporting projects that help to deliver a net zero carbon economy.
Robert Gordon, CEO of Hitachi Capital (UK), said the partnership – which he described as marking a “breakthrough” in delivering EV infrastructure – combines Hitachi’s financial strength and motor industry experience with GRIDSERVE’s “leading renewable energy work”.
The partnership also encompasses the UK’s first net zero EV leasing businesses, according to the duo, which is designed to bring the cost of driving EVs powered by renewables below that of petrol or diesel cars.
Toddington Harper, CEO of GRIDSERVE Sustainable Energy, said this leasing business, as well as the completion of the Electric Forecourt, is “testament to the results and benefits we can achieve through our partnership”.