In the Electric Vehicle (EV) industry, Blink Charging is a leading enterprise which provides EV charging equipment and network services. It has thousands of charging stations across the United States. In an interview with Insights Success, Michael Farkas, the Founder and Executive Chairman of the company, shares his insights over experiences, products and motto of the organization along with the future goals in revolutionizing the EV industry.
Below are the highlights of the interview conducted between Farkas and Insights Success:
Give a brief overview of the Blink Charging, its uniqueness and its vision.
Blink Charging is headquartered in Florida with offices in Arizona and California. It is designed and established to accelerate EV adoption with a vision to keep expanding not only in North America, but all around the world.
Here are some examples which differentiate us from our competitors:
Ownership and Control of EV Charging Stations and Services: We own a large percentage of our stations, which is a significant differentiation between us and some of our primary competitors. This ownership model allows us to control the settings and pricing for our EV charging services, maintain the equipment, and have greater brand management and price uniformity.
Experience with Products and Services of Other EV Charging Service Providers: We have had an experience of owning and operating other service provider’s EV charging equipment that includes General Electric, ChargePoint and SemaConnect. This experience has provided us with the working knowledge of the benefits and challenges of other equipment manufacturers and their applicable EV charging networks.
What are the cutting-edge products/services offered by Blink Charging?
Blink Network is proprietary cloud-based software that operates, maintains, and tracks all of the EV charging stations connected to the network and the associated charging data. Blink Network provides property owners, property managers, and businesses with cloud-based services that enable the remote monitoring and management of EV charging stations, payment processing. It also provides vital EV charger information including station location, directions, availability, and applicable fees to the EV drivers.
Blink Charging offer individuals with a flexible range of business models for EV charging equipment and services. In its comprehensive model, the company owns, operates, installs, manages and maintains the EV charging set-up, and shares a piece of the revenue with the property owner. Alternatively, property owners may share in the system expenses including providing connectivity to the Blink Network. For businesses interested in purchasing, owning, and managing the charging stations, Blink Charging provides complete support from equipment to network connectivity and maintenance services.
Give a detailed description of the Founder/CEO/Management’s influence over the company and the industry.
In founding Blink Charging, Michael Farkas conceived the EV charging infrastructure business, and was the first “player in the game” – pioneering an industry. The model proved so successful, that Blink competitors have historically tried to replicate Farkas’ methods. To date, Farkas is an expert in the electric vehicle, EV charging, and green technology space. He is constantly looking forward to introduce disruptive methodology into Blink Charging and looks towards hardware advancement to change the direction of EV charging tactics.
Describe the experiences, achievements or lessons learnt that have shaped the journey of the company.
Our plans have changed and evolved throughout our years in business, and we are proud of what we’ve accomplished. This includes our R&D successes and our successful rounds of funding. We’ve raised the capital when we needed it, and now with the increasing capital, we will see as a result of being the only pure-play charging company on the NASDAQ.
We’ve found that a big part of maintaining our entrepreneurial spirit is being flexible. We’re always ready to make the best use of new opportunities that emerge in the clean transportation sector. We’ve made mistakes along the way, and we regret none of them, because we learned so much from each mistake. If you believe in electric vehicles, the smartest investment to make is not necessarily in car companies. Historically, 99 percent of them have gone bankrupt. The money to be made is among fuel supplying companies, required at every moment when a vehicle is in operation. We are certain the future is electric.
What are the challenges faced by electric vehicles industry and how is Blink Charging serving to tackle them?
There are different issues that have arisen at different times. Lastly, the issue that arose was having the right product of EV. The first generation of EV were compliance cars that only went 30-40 miles on a single charge. As an answer, Chevy Bolt and Tesla Model 3 are economically priced, full-battery vehicles that an average consumer can afford. By 2020, all major manufacturers will have several EV models that will go an excess of 300 miles on a single charge.
Another issue was charging infrastructure, or lack thereof. Blink Charging came in and took steps to deploy hardware in the areas where it’s needed. Now, the main obstacle that the industry faces is consumers’ awareness. We have to let the people know that they can buy an electric car that can satisfy their transportation needs.
Give us a few testimonials of your clients that accurately highlight Blink Charging position in the market.
“Blink is a leader in the network service and EV charger markets in the US, and its products and solutions serve as the standard technologies in the region.” – Hong Dong-ho, CEO of DSPOne.
“As an urban institution that is deeply engaged with its communities, Temple is committed to creating a sustainable campus environment and culture. The Blink EV chargers are an important part of Temple’s sustainability initiatives to reduce transportationrelated greenhouse gas emissions.” – Kathleen Grady, Temple University’s Director of Sustainability.