Royal Dutch Shell Plc is linking up with some of the world’s biggest carmakers to expand its electric-vehicle charging business in Europe as it prepares for life beyond oil.
The second-biggest oil company has agreed with IONITY – a Munich-based venture between BMW Group, Daimler AG, Ford Motor Co. and Volkswagen AG – to start charging stations in 10 European nations, Shell said on Monday in a statement.
The agreement builds on Shell’s acquisition of Europe’s largest electric-vehicle charging provider NewMotion last month. The deals come as the oil industry goes through a critical phase in its history, with the dominance of gasoline and diesel challenged by the need for cleaner energy. Markets including France, the U.K. and China are talking about phasing out the sale of fossil-fuel-powered cars in the coming decades, and major energy companies are looking to adapt.
Shell and IONITY will initially have charging points at 80 of Shell’s biggest highway fuel stations, with an average of six posts in each. It will take five to eight minutes on average to charge an electric vehicle at these points, according to the statement.
Shell opened its first rapid-charging point for electric cars at gasoline stations in the U.K. last month. The company wants 20 percent of profit margins from fuel sold in its retail forecourts to come from vehicles that don’t burn diesel or gasoline by 2025, John Abbott, the top executive of its downstream business, said in September.