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What Is the Cost and Return on Investment of EV Charging for Business?

When is the right time to install EV charging points? And how can you earn back the investment? In this blog, we cover everything you need to know about EV charging for business.

business ev charging

There are over 950,000 fully-electric cars on UK roads15.6% of all new car registrations were EVs last November, with 24,359 new electric cars registered in that month alone. 

Sooner rather than later, to support this continued growth in electric mobility, businesses and consumers are going to need a suitable network of charging points of various speeds in every type of location, from workplaces to retail outlets, hotels and to leisure facilities. 

In this blog, we cover: 

When is it the right time to install EV charging stations on our business premises? 

What is the capital outlay and the day-to-day operating costs?  

What benefits can it bring us and our staff?  

How do we earn back the investment?  


When is the time right to install EV charging for my business?


With more pressure than ever before on businesses to prove that sustainability is high on their CSR agenda, now is the time to take action, even if you start small.  

Rather than waiting until you have made the switch to EVs and introduce charge points, businesses should look to start the process now, due to the lengthy timelines associated with installing EV charging infrastructure Due to costs and time constraints, a full-scale conversion or introduction of multiple charge points may not be possible immediately – so it might be good to start with a pilot project and then scale up the change. 

It’s also crucial to ensure you have a plan in place for properly communicating the plan for fleet electrification across your business. 


The cost of electric car charging points for business


So, how much does it cost to install a commercial EV charging station? The exact price depends on several factors: 

  1. The hardware chosen: The costs for a charging station will vary on your infrastructure requirements, depending on the type of charger and the speed. Be sure to choose a charge point operator (CPO) who prioritises the best quality hardware and can advise on what is right for you and your business needs.  
  2. The installation specifics (cabling, digging etc.): The total installation costs depend on the distance between the charging station and the meter cupboard in your business premises.   

On average, 1-2 charging sessions take place per connection per day. This depends on the number of visitors and employees with an EV and the duration of the charging sessions. Most businesses will opt to install a fast charger to begin with, meaning that if your EV has a 40kW battery and you have a 7kW EV charger, it will take approximately 3.5 hours to reach an 80% charge (from a 20% charged battery). 


The OZEV workplace charging scheme – how can I claim the grant?


The Workplace Charging Scheme provides eligible applicants with support towards the upfront costs of purchasing and installing EV charge points. The grant can be used together with the EV infrastructure grant for staff and fleets for the same site, but not the same charge points. 

The grant covers up to 75% of the costs (inclusive of VAT) of the purchase and installation of your charge points, capped at £350 per socket and 40 sockets across all sites per applicant. 

All you need to do is complete an online form to receive your grant code 


Day-to-day operating costs of EV charge stations 


It may come as a surprise, but most of the costs connected to EV chargers are often related to the day-to-day operating expenses, not the capital outlay.  

 So, what are the hidden costs and how can you keep them to a minimum?  

  • High installation costs: given that relatively new technology is in use, it is important to choose experience over initial savings when it comes to installation. Some businesses have found themselves having to fund multiple site visits due to using inexperienced electricians. At Mer, we take care of our business customers throughout the journey, from consultation to installation. We can guarantee a high level of customer service, and experienced installers who have been vetted throughout our onboarding process. 
  • Faulty or low quality parts: exposure to the elements can result in broken charger parts if the quality of components is not up to scratch. The housing of Mer chargers are dustproof and weather-proof according to IP44 or IP54 standards for devices with a fixed charging cable. And all packages include a warranty period for all goods and services against defects in materials, products and services.  
  • Electricity connection costs: think carefully when it comes to installing your charge points. Are you able to select locations where a new charger can be installed and make use of an existing connection? The costs of setting up a new electricity connection can be steep.  
  • Load management: if you opt for multiple charge points, it is possible the network will be planned for maximum load, which you will rarely need. Load management, provided by suppliers such as Mer, will prevent overloading of the electrical connection and help to lower connection fees and peak tariffs. 


The benefits of EV charging stations for business – seeing a return on your investment  


1. Charging stations can be used as a marketing tool

Many companies include the presence of charging points for electric cars in their choice of a conference or meeting location or in their choice of a hotel or restaurant. Compare this revolutionary change with that of WiFi. A previously rare and unexpected service is now available (freely) everywhere as standard.  

Various apps and websites show which locations have a charging station at their disposal. For example, on Booking.com you can select business locations with a charging station.  

In addition, guests can see where charging points are located via Google Maps. There is a good chance that they will stop at a business with a charging point so that they can charge on the go. After all, charging an electric car takes at least half an hour and that is valuable time. With your own charging station(s), you can attract visitors from unexpected horizons.  


2. See a return by charging users for the electricity they use

Are EV charging stations profitable? Depending on the cost model you select for your charge points, you may find you can earn back your investment by charging for electricity. 


3. Where should businesses start with EV charging?

What is the composition of your vehicle fleet? How many charge points would you need and at what speed to adequately serve employees, visitors and/or customers? Establish what you currently have and what you want to aim for. It then becomes easier to set targets that are ambitious but achievable. 

Check out our guide for devising a fleet electrification strategy. 


What is included with Mer’s EV charge points for businesses?

  • Best in class hardware 
  • A bespoke EV charging solution with your fleet in mind 
  • The installation 
  •  A full aftercare and maintenance service 
  • 24/7 Mer helpline 
  • Access to Mer’s Operator Portal for real-time optimisation of chargers, vehicles, and energy generation assets 

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