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EV Charging Network ChargePoint to Go Public in $2.4 Billion Deal

By John Rosevear – Sep 24, 2020 at 9:12AM

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The deal is expected to close by the end of 2020.

ChargePoint, one of the first and largest electric-vehicle recharging networks, said on Thursday that it will go public via a merger with special-purpose acquisition company Switchback Energy Acquisition (SBE).

The proposed deal values ChargePoint at $2.4 billion and is expected to close by the end of 2020. Reuters reported last week that the two companies were considering a merger.

The deal follows the broad pattern of other recent deals involving electric-vehicle start-ups and special purpose acquisition companies, or SPACs, that have drawn intense interest from auto investors in 2020. As in the deal that took electric-truck start-up Nikola public in June, the ChargePoint deal includes a so-called PIPE: "public investment in private equity." 

PIPE investors agree in advance to invest a set amount in exchange for stock at a set price, typically discounted. The ChargePoint deal includes a $225 million PIPE, with investments from institutional investors including Baillie Gifford and funds managed by Neuberger Berman. 

The merged company, to be called ChargePoint Holdings, will realize about $493 million in net proceeds from the deal, and will have a total of $683 million in cash. Pasquale Romano, ChargePoint's current CEO, will lead the combined company. 

Switchback Energy is led by veteran energy investors including CEO Scott McNeill, a former executive of oil and gas company RSP Permian. McNeill said that with the total addressable market for electric-vehicle charging set to grow dramatically, ChargePoint is a compelling merger target. 

A row of ChargePoint electric-vehicle chargers.

ChargePoint, one of the oldest and largest charging networks, has about 115,000 electric-vehicle chargers in service now. Image source: Maria Hedrick via ChargePoint.

"The EV charging industry is accelerating and it is expected that charging infrastructure investment will be $190 billion by 2030," McNeill said in a statement. "As a first mover in the space, ChargePoint has distinguished itself as the number one EV charging network and is well positioned to deliver mission-critical charging infrastructure as the expected transition to electric mobility accelerates."

ChargePoint, founded in 2007, has become a dominant player in the emerging electric-vehicle-recharging industry. The company has about 115,000 charging points around the world, a total it expects to raise to about 2.5 million by 2025, and counts BMW, Daimler, Siemens, and Chevron among its investors. 

ChargePoint generated $147 million in revenue in 2019. It expects to use the proceeds of this deal to expand in North America and Europe, and aims to be profitable by 2023.

John Rosevear has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Stocks Mentioned

Switchback Energy Acquisition Corporation Stock Quote
Switchback Energy Acquisition Corporation
SBE
Chevron Stock Quote
Chevron
CVX
$179.84 (0.83%) $1.48
Siemens Aktiengesellschaft Stock Quote
Siemens Aktiengesellschaft
SIEGY
$68.97 (1.32%) $0.90
Bayerische Motoren Werke Stock Quote
Bayerische Motoren Werke
BMWYY
$29.35 (2.09%) $0.60
Mercedes-Benz Group Stock Quote
Mercedes-Benz Group
MBGY.Y
$16.15 (2.05%) $0.33
Nikola Corporation Stock Quote
Nikola Corporation
NKLA
$2.33 (0.87%) $0.02

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