ABB has made yet another acquisition, this time in the electric vehicle market. The power and automation giant announced on Friday it would purchase the Dutch company Epyon B.V., a spin-off company from Delft University of Technology that provides DC fast-charging stations and the network software to support them.
ABB already has a play in the EV world; it invested $10 million in the American charging company Ecotality earlier this year.
“This acquisition gives ABB access to competitive products, key network management software, and a robust maintenance service business model, which ideally complements our own offering,” Ulrich Spiesshofer, head of ABB's Discrete Automation and Motion division, said in a press release.
The DC fast-charging stations have been in use since May of 2010 in the Netherlands and can charge an EV in as little as 15 minutes.
Although early research has shown most charging happens at home, range anxiety is very real amongst some initial EV drivers and could be ameliorated with some well-placed DC charging stations.
ABB’s CEO Joe Hogan said at the company’s annual meeting this year that it was still focused on growing organically within ABB, yet the pace of acquisitions has not let up.
Besides the investment in Ecotality, in the past year alone, ABB has bought Mincom, which makes software for managing mining operations; Validus DC Systems, which provides DC power infrastructure for data centers; electric motor maker Baldor Electric for $4.2 billion; virtual power plant developer Ventyx for $1 billion, and Insert Key Solutions, which specializes in asset management software. As long as ABB continues to see good value out in the market, the rash of buying will likely continue, especially as its competitors -- including Schneider Electric and General Electric -- are also happy to pull out the checkbook for the right opportunity.
The financial details of the Epyon deal were not disclosed.