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Summary:

Looks like Israel isn’t the only place that’s willing to take a chance on Shai Agassi’s electric vehicle infrastructure plan: Denmark has decided to give Project Better Place a go, too. Today Danish utility DONG Energy and Silicon Valley startup Project Better Place said they plan […]

Looks like Israel isn’t the only place that’s willing to take a chance on Shai Agassi’s electric vehicle infrastructure plan: Denmark has decided to give Project Better Place a go, too. Today Danish utility DONG Energy and Silicon Valley startup Project Better Place said they plan to start work on an electric vehicle battery exchange network in Denmark and give Danish consumers access to electric vehicles via the Renault-Nissan partnership.

PBP

This is the well-funded company’s second locale for its electric vehicle infrastructure business model, proving that the idea is gaining traction outside of the perfect conditions of Israel (in places where Agassi is less connected and where the government isn’t as aggressive about moving away from oil). But like Israel, Denmark is small — 5.4 million residents — and has unusually progressive environmental policies. So with this second country on board, it’s becoming clear what geographies would make a good match for Project Better Place.

The duo played up the country’s use of wind — 20 percent of the country’s total electricity according to the WSJ — as a good match for the electric vehicle plan. Anders Eldrup, CEO of DONG Energy, said:

At the same time, we will achieve a new way of storing the unstable electricity output from wind turbines, as EVs are typically charged during the night, when the exploitation of power generation is low. This provides optimum exploitation of our resources for the benefit of the environment.”

Surprisingly absent in the news was how the project will get funded in Denmark. Project Better Place raised at least $200 million from investors Israel Corp., Ofer Shipping Holdings, Morgan Stanley, VantagePoint Venture Partners and private investors. But these projects are expensive and the Israeli one will cost an initial $200 million, and eventually $1 billion by the time the project is complete. So the Denmark plan will need more than what the company has been reported to have raised. Not doubt they’ll need more funding, and the Globes, an Israeli paper, reported that the Denmark plan will get financing help from Israel Corp.


Previous coverage of Project Better Place:


Project Better Place Taps Israel CEO, New Partners

Project Better Place and Renault-Nissan Charge Ahead in Israel

  1. audiotechnews Thursday, March 27, 2008

    Not sure if you’re interested, but there’s a Shai Agassi interview here

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  2. [...] quarter of 2008. Meanwhile the ink is barely dry on Shai Agassi’s deal between his startup Project Better Place and the Danish utility DONG to build the charging station and battery-swapping infrastructure for the project’s [...]

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  3. [...] Posted July 9th, 2008 at 8:05 am in Startups First it was “Shalom,” then “Goddag,” and perhaps very soon “Olá” for Shai Agassi’s electric vehicle [...]

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  4. [...] Battery-swapping made us think Tesla might be getting on board with Shai Agassi’s Better Place, but Musk said that at this point the two startups are focusing on different markets — Better Place currently has deals with Israel and Denmark. [...]

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  5. [...] size matters, and while critics say the model can only work in diminutive markets like Israel and Denmark, the company needs to show it can scale. If founder Shai Agassi can make it work in Australia, the [...]

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  6. [...] Energy inked a deal last year with Palo Alto, Calif.’s Better Place to bring electric vehicles and a charging [...]

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  7. [...] two companies originally signed a deal to work together last March. With this funding in place, which comes from Better Place and state-controlled DONG in the form of [...]

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  8. [...] packed its project pipeline at a brisk pace (networks or pilot projects are now being considered in Denmark, Israel, Australia, Japan, Ontario, Hawaii and the San Francisco Bay Area), they won’t get [...]

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  9. [...] spot for EV infrastructure, with more than a million charge point installations by 2015. Israel and Denmark (two countries where startup Better Place has deals) are also expected to be “hotbeds for EV [...]

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