Will the electric vehicle bill for the upcoming gig of the gig economy? SparkCharge thinks so – TechCrunch

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Last week the company shipped mobile batteries SparkCharge Advertise Partnership Agreement with AllState Which is expanding the company’s reach to vehicle services, pushing the company further down the road towards its goal of making the electric vehicle charge the next economic job.

The company, which developed, designs and markets a portable car charger, is also in the process of closing a $ 5 million round led by Shark Tank investor Marc Cuban and others as it brings its new portable charging device, called Roadie, to the market.

The 120 kW SparkCharge fast charger can be delivered on demand through a network of partners that now includes AllState and Durham, NC Auto Services, Classy. Customers can choose to pack between 50 and 100 miles of charging with Roadie, which is the backbone of the wider shipping network envisioned by SparkCharge founder, Joshua Aviv.

“You can say that I want a shipment at this point in time at this location and this large scale,” Aviv said. “You pay and all fees are delivered in one application.”

To date, the agreement between AllState and SparkCharge covers four cities: Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego, California, and the insurance and roadside assistance provider has ordered nearly two dozen portable chargers.

Working through companies like Spiffy and AllState is one way to get into the market, but the CEO of SparkCharge believes freelance workers can start their own businesses that offer on-demand fees to clients.

The on-call fee costs around 50 cents per mile and a customer can be charged a large enough fee for as little as $ 10, according to Aviv.

“We’re basically creating a whole new product [charging] A network, ”said Aviv.“ This is not a network that is supposed to be a temporary hiatus. It’s an always-on, always-on, better and faster network than [traditional chargers]… we don’t need permits, we don’t need to build. With our unit, you can take it out from the box you connect to the car, press the button and start charging. With us, every parking lot, every location – now a charging station. This is a much better network than legacy. “

People who would like to offer charging services would pay roughly $ 450 a month for the equipment, and this would give them the battery and equipment they need to start their own on-demand electric vehicle charging business.

“It’s a business designed to allow people to serve electric vehicle owners,” Aviv said.

Somerville, Massachusetts was born out of Aviv’s fascination with and frustration with the current state of electric vehicle charging infrastructure.

As noted by The Wall Street JournalOne of the major hurdles electric vehicles have to overcome to achieve universal adoption is the lack of charging infrastructure.

at A survey of 3,500 electric vehicle drivers, Citing the magazine, which was conducted by the Dawa group in the months of September and October of last year Delivery in AmericaMore than half of respondents reported having problems with general shipping. These problems are worse for drivers who do not own Teslas.

Regardless of what may be true about the electric vehicle that Elon built (along with thousands of workers and a multitude of additional innovators and company founders), Tesla’s focus on having enough charging infrastructure to support its customers has reaped huge profits. Other carmakers, retailers and independent freight service providers are starting to catch up.

Companies ranging from major oil companies like Shell to carmakers like Volkswagen, which have spent $ 2 billion building a network for charging electric cars. As part of the settlement of diesel emissions cheated, You have networks built or in preparation.

For Aviv, who has owned an electric car since 2013 when he bought a Chevrolet Volt, the problem was evident. He started working for the company in 2014 when he was still a student at Syracuse University. A professor and counselor at the university previously served on the board of directors of the Environmental Protection Agency and was a staunch supporter of electric cars.

After college, Aviv continued working in the business to develop a portable charging station and then create a distribution and sales platform and a network of service providers on top of it. This is how SparkCharge is built.

In the early days, the company received help from groups such as the Los Angeles Clean Technology Incubator and investors such as Techstars Boston Fund, Techstars, Steve Case’s Rise of the Rest and his investment firm Revolution, PEAK6 Investments, and Buffalo, New York. 46 North, along with investors such as Copan.

I saw the current [charging] “Our infrastructure has a lot of faults,” Aviv said. It includes the downtime between maintenance of the shipping infrastructure, the time taken for the freight network to grow and the lack of maintenance and support for the chargers.

You don’t want these EV drivers to drive around town without any guarantee of infrastructure. It’s an interesting tug-of-war game that we’re going to see unfold and consumers might be more convincing to drive an electric car, ”he said. [with SparkCharge] Because you can not only connect the domain, but you can order it on demand.

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