Innogy, Germany’s biggest energy company, recently announced they are to enter the US market, focusing on California, after establishing a new subsidiary called Innogy e-mobility US LLC.
They have partnered with Oxygen Initiate, a start-up that said earlier this year they were ready to enter the US market with Stephen G. Davis, founder and CEO of Oxygen Initiative stating:
“E-mobility technologies are ushering in advancements in transportation that could foster the adoption of clean-tech autonomous vehicles (AVs) and electric vehicles (EVs), which could bring the dream of less congestion and pollution, shorter commutes and lower operating costs into reality.
We’re excited to do our part by introducing blockchain technology for the mobility space to the United States, starting with access and payment solutions for electric charging stations.”
Innogy manages some 5,700 EV charging points, making them Europe’s largest EV charging network. Earlier this year, they blockchenized hundreds of them through ethereum.
As we reported back then, Carsten Stöcker, Senior Manager at Innogy Innovation Hub, stated:
“100s of EV Charging Assets all over Germany Blockchainified. E2E Product using asset-backed Crypto-EURO for payments,” before adding “our EV Charging assets will be on public ethereum blockchain and further assets across EU connected soon.”
They’re now expanding beyond EU to America as electric vehicles start to take off, opening one of the more interesting industry to blockchain technology as EVs are still very new, thus allowing for an easier incorporation of new tech, such as ethereum and smart contracts.
“We are firm believers in the future of electric mobility. For this reason, innogy is working constantly to drive forward the expansion of clean, climate-friendly mobility.
In Germany, we are already the leader in terms of number of charging points. Now we want to continue this success in the US. For there too, electric mobility and climate protection are a mega-topic for many states and big cities – and we have the innovative solutions for tomorrow’s traffic,” Peter Terium, CEO of innogy SE said.
Car manufacturers have also started exploring ethereum specifically and blockchain technology more generally. Toyota, for example, has been prototyping an ethereum based car sharing Uber alternative. While Ford has started looking for a blockchain engineer.
All three, including Innogy, are eyeing a potential future of self-driving cars which can be incorporated with ethereum based smart contracts to autonomously pay charging stations or for other services.
But even now, some are testing automatic payments through the blockchain when passing toll-booths or for payment of parking fees.