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Leading Change With Giles Benbow

In our inaugural ‘Leading Change With’ interview, Giles Benbow tells us how he entered the EV charging industry, his favourite thing about working for Mer, and more.

Our ‘Leading Change With’ interview series hopes to offer an insight into the faces behind Mer – who we are, what inspires us, and why we love working in the EV charging industry.

Giles Benbow, Senior Manager for Business and Partnership Development at Mer Group, is first up in the series. We spoke with him about what brought him to the EV charging industry, his industry predictions, his favourite green initiative, and more.

You can also watch Giles’ interview on our YouTube channel.


Working In The EV Charging Sector

How and when did you get into this industry?

So I got into the industry in 2012. I’m an electrician by trade, and I was looking for the next sort of opportunity after solar and renewables, and it just seemed like a logical progression for me to start working with electric cars.

What do you find most rewarding about your job?

The thing that I find really rewarding about this job is that we’re sort of building a legacy, we’re changing the narrative, we’re improving the environment for future generations to come.


The EV Industry

How can we encourage more people to adopt EVs?

To encourage more people to adopt EVs, we need to make EV ownership much more accessible. That comes down to lots of different factors: making sure that practically the vehicles are sort of similar or even better than the current experiences that people have, but also making sure that it’s affordable. Obviously right now there’s a few issues around energy supply, but long term we can see that there’ll be a point where we reach parity and even better, and it will actually be much more accessible for everyone.

mer rapid charger


What are your industry predictions for the next twelve months?

So in the next twelve months, I think we’re going to see a lot more electric vehicles just hit the road. There’s this pent-up demand; supply chain constraints have really sort of slowed the vehicles coming to the road, but there’s a huge amount of demand and we’re going to start seeing that come to fruition over the next twelve months.

Mid-term, we’re going to start seeing some of the outlying cases, so some of the heavier good’s vehicles, start to be converted. And then longer term, possibly even looking at shipping and flights. It’s really exciting to see where this could possibly go.

"seeing this sort of zero carbon, circular potential, that's what's really really exciting, where we don't need to be generating dirty fossil fuels but actually just putting clean genuinely clean energy into our vehicles."


What is your favourite green initiative?

My favourite green initiative isn’t a single thing. I would say that ultimately, the electric car is my favourite, because the electric car is something that people aspire to want, it’s a consumer product, it’s a low hanging fruit – people buy cars. But it’s all the associated elements that go with it. So when I started in 2012, I sold my diesel vehicle, I invested in a solar PV system with the money and the capital that I released from that, and then I leased an electric car and I was really genuinely powering my car from solar energy. So seeing this sort of the zero carbon, circular potential, that’s what’s really really exciting, where we don’t need to be generating dirty fossil fuels but actually just putting clean genuinely clean energy into our vehicles.


Working At Mer & Advice For Entering The EV Industry

What is the best piece of advice anyone has ever given you?

The best piece of advice that I’ve ever been given is don’t be a busy idiot.

Ultra-Rapid Charging

What is your favourite thing about working for Mer?

My favourite thing about working at Mer is the family, but it’s also the mission. We’re really genuine – the background of the company, the renewable energy, and the people that work here. It’s genuine.

What piece of advice would you give to someone who is entering the EV industry?

The piece of advice I would give anyone looking to get into the EV industry is: go for it. There’s so much left to do, there’s so much potential, and you can really make a career out of it. And it doesn’t matter where you are in that food chain or what your vocation is. There’s something for everyone in this industry and it’s only going one way, so go for it.

"go for it. There’s so much left to do, there's so much potential, and you can really make a career out of it."

Beyond The Office

What do you do when you are not working?

I’m a father of two, so quite a lot of the time it’s spent with my lovely, beautiful family. My two kids actually are part of the new generation. They were both brought home in electric cars – I’ve been in electric cars since 2012, my son’s seven, my daughter’s three. So they just don’t know what it what it was like; we were talking about petrol cars with my son and he said ‘Daddy, where do you fill a petrol car up? It makes no sense, you can’t just plug it in at home,’ and I just I really love that. So a family man, but also I’m super keen into my sports. I do a lot of cycling, I do a lot of cricket, I’m quite involved in the community as well, as a cricket and football coach.


Watch the full interview on our YouTube Channel.