The entire electric vehicle (EV) charging industry continues to grapple with the question of where to build charging stations. Since the fastest chargers (DCFCs) can take 30 to 40 minutes to fully charge an EV and other less expensive chargers (Level Two chargers) can take 4 hours or more to charge, drivers will need a place to pass the time. Universal EV Chargers’ strategy from the beginning has been to work with hospitality businesses like hotels, theme parks and other entertainment venues as well as multi-unit housing developments and large office complexes to build EV charging stations that offer natural ways EV drivers can spend their time while their EVs are charging.
The issue of where to locate public EV chargers is more complicated than it might first appear. Many chargers are co-located with other businesses with a lack of accessible entertainment or productivity tools. For example, gas stations are typically poor locations for EV chargers, as they usually have only enough space for gas pumps and a convenience store and little room to accommodate EV drivers while they wait. Most EV owners (84% as of 2022) primarily charge their vehicles at home, according to the J.D. Powers 2022 U.S. Electric Vehicle Experience (EVX) Home Charging Study, but those who live in apartment buildings or condos are not likely to have access to home chargers. These EV drivers must use public charging stations.
Companies like Tesla, who built many large public charging stations during the early adopter phase of EVs, is now experimenting with adding a variety of different additions to their charging stations to help drivers stay productive and/or entertained. They have built coffee shops and even a small swimming pool to see if EV drivers will value them. This additional investment is now required because the initial EV charging station design did not consider the needs of the electric vehicle driver beyond basic charging.
Universal Green Group set out to be a major contributor to the green energy sector in 2009. Following our rapid growth in sustainable solar energy products, we leveraged our green expertise to launch the Universal EV Chargers division in 2019 to meet the growing EV adoption rate and the national need for a superior EV charging network.
Our CEO Hemal Doshi envisions a U.S.-based EV charging network where EV drivers can find a compatible, working charger where and when it is needed in addition to having them in places where electric vehicle drivers can easily occupy their time while waiting.
“As an electric vehicle driver myself, I experienced first-hand the frustrating challenges associated with charging my own EV, especially in areas where I must wait a significant amount of time without entertainment or productivity options,” said Doshi. “Once we explored the underlying industry challenges, we realized that our team was already fully capable of addressing each one of them. We set to work to make our vision a reality, and the market response has been overwhelming.”
One of the assets our team brought to the EV charging business that has differentiated us from other EV charger brands is our relationships with hotels and understanding of the hospitality industry’s business models. The company set about contacting the dozens of hotel owners who had purchased solar energy systems from Universal Green Group to discuss the benefits of installing an EV charging station on their premises.
Hotels can offer EV charging services to guests while they sleep and visitors while they wait. Often, these visitors become customers after sampling the ambiance and amenities of the hotel, which is one of the benefits that hotels find attractive. As a result, our strategy has worked well with far-reaching results as we are already on the approved vendor lists for multiple large hotel and motel brands, including Hyatt, Marriott, IHG, Hilton, Wyndham and Choice Hotels.
As of 2022, we are installing thousands of EV chargers across the United States in hotels, entertainment venues, office buildings and shopping venues.