1. Home
  2. Knowhow

ENEOS acquires 4600 units from NEC with EV charging network as a pillar of profit 

Date:2022-06-07   Author:XINDA MOTOR

ENEOS Holdings (HD) is rushing to develop an electric vehicle (EV) charging network. On the 6th, it announced that it had acquired the operating rights for EV chargers from NEC . Add about 4600 chargers to the company's supply network. Up to 10,000 quick chargers will be installed until the fiscal year ending March 2031. As the price of gasoline soars accelerates the conversion to EVs, Japan's largest EV charging network will be set up to lead to a transformation of the business structure.

Acquired the operating right of chargers installed in supermarkets and shopping malls owned by NEC. ENEOS launched the EV Business Promotion Department in 2009 and has placed chargers at its own branded gas stations. There are restrictions on the Fire Service Act for installing chargers at gas stations, and as of March 2010, there were only 17 chargers.
By acquiring operating rights from NEC, the company aims to expand the charging infrastructure to locations other than gas stations, increase profits, and improve customer usability. In the future, it will be possible to grasp the operating status of the charger with the smartphone app. Consider using contactless payment tools provided to gas station members.
The reason behind this acquisition was the decline in gasoline sales, which is the mainstay. Gasoline sales will continue to shrink for a long time due to the electrification of automobiles and the declining population. Gasoline prices remain high due to soaring crude oil prices, which is also accelerating drivers' desire to save money.
ENEOS has shown that domestic gasoline demand could be halved by 1940. President Takeshi Saito has intensified his sense of crisis, saying, "(The speed of decline) may accelerate" because of the high price of crude oil. There was an urgent need to change the business structure in line with the conversion from gasoline to EV.

In 2020, ENEOS invested in a start-up company that collects and reuses EV batteries through an investment company under its umbrella. In 2009, it also invested in a US emerging vehicle related to EV batteries. Draw a strategy to increase profitability by selling services such as maintenance, EV battery collection, and household electricity retail business to charger members. Expand the customer base by expanding the charging network.

Other energy companies are also looking for monetization of EV-related businesses. TEPCO HD plans to work with a highway company to increase the number of quick charger charging ports in highway parking areas from 400 to 1000 by 2013. Currently, most chargers have one unit and one unit, but replacing it with a charger that has multiple units in one unit will improve efficiency.
Cosmo Energy HD will collaborate with TEPCO HD and e-mobility power (Tokyo, Minato), which is funded by Chubu Electric Power Company , to install EV chargers at affiliated gas stations. Idemitsu Kosan has teamed up with a Taiwanese charging equipment manufacturer to repeatedly demonstrate EV chargers using the site of a gas station.
Overseas oil majors are ahead in the development of EV charging networks. The British shell has set a goal of increasing the number of charging facilities from the current 90,000 to 500,000 by 2013. British BP plans to increase from 13,000 to 100,000 by 2018. Companies, including Chevron in the US and TotalEnergies in France, will explore the future of defossil fuels through acquisitions and investments in start-up companies.

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), the number of public EV chargers in the world as of 2009 was about 1.8 million, an increase of 40% from the previous year. More than half of these are in China, which is investing in EVs as a national policy. Europe is increasing at a pace of 30% and the United States is also increasing at a pace of 15%. Japan has a clear delay.

There is a limit to the investment of ENEOS alone in order to grow Japan's EV infrastructure to the level of Europe and the United States. It is also necessary to work with oil companies that have existing infrastructure such as gas stations and electric power companies that supply electricity. Continued government support to encourage infrastructure investment is also essential.

(Naoyuki Toyama)