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FLO raises $136M to commercialize, expand EV charging network

Funding will also support project to bring over 1,900 charging ports to Canada

A rendering of FLO's Ultra chargers. (Courtesy FLO)

Electric vehicle (EV) charger developer and network operator FLO will be using $136 million from a funding round led by Export Development Canada (EDC) to commercially launch its products and expand its web of charging stations.

The funding will be used to market its FLO Ultra fast charger and the next generation of FLO Home residential chargers, and support the rollout of charging ports it owns and operates that is being funded by a loan from the Canada Infrastructure Bank.

The Series E funding round “comes at a perfect place,” Louis Tremblay, FLO CEO and president, told Sustainable Biz Canada. “FLO is strong financially today to keeping doing what we were doing for the last 15 years,” and to grow market share.

It was supported by Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, Investissement Québec, Business Development Bank of Canada, Energy Impact Partners and MacKinnon, Bennett & Company Inc. Erik Brien-Wright, a partner in mid-market growth capital at EDC will join FLO’s board of directors.

Having just celebrated 15 years since its founding, Quebec City-based FLO has provided over 100,000 public and private EV chargers in North America, mostly in Canada. Its clients include utilities, real estate companies, automakers and municipalities.

Accelerating its charger deployment

FLO Ultra is a 320-kilowatt dual-port charger designed to power EV batteries to 80 per cent in 15 minutes. Paired with a second charger, it can reach up to 500 kilowatts. “It’s something that EV drivers need to feel less range anxiety around Canada and the U.S.,” Tremblay said.

Three home charging options in its FLO Home series covering a range of power needs were announced earlier this year. It accommodates the smallest EVs to the biggest electric pickup trucks, he added.

Deliveries of FLO Ultra will begin this month, and FLO Home products will be available for sale this summer.

Growing the sales force and marketing efforts for North American customers of FLO Ultra and Home will be part of the Series E investment.

FLO is also developing a new product line it will announce in the future, Tremblay said.

The FLO CEO added he is “very excited” for the company’s potential in the U.S. Tremblay is convinced FLO’s latest products will be a success in Canada, and the company is looking at the larger U.S. market as “ripe for success,” bolstered by federal subsidies for fast charging programs.

“This is definitely where we will generate some growth with the FLO Ultras. And also, I feel with the three new products we have in the Home series that we are going to be able to address 100 per cent of EV driver needs at home with these three new products,” he said.

Expanding its existing charging network

The funding will also be used to expand on a $235-million partnership with the Canada Infrastructure Bank to bring over 1,900 EV charging ports to Canada by 2027.

Metro is FLO’s first partner in the agreement, with plans to install approximately 500 chargers in over 130 Metro-owned franchises in Quebec and Ontario.

The grocer has the “perfect locations” for its second phase of growth, where EV drivers want amenities on the road, Tremblay said.

FLO may consider more financing, but the company is currently fully funded and is ready to take more market share, he said.

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