“By investing in VULOG, we support the development of green transport in cities. The carsharing concept allows the utilization of cars to increase up to 100% and this can ensure that investments in electric cars and recharging infrastructure will provide economic returns. I believe that, thanks to the new investment, we will further strengthen our know-how in the area of the smart city concept and at the same time we will assist this platform in spreading to other markets, including the Czech Republic,” explains Daniel Beneš, Chief Executive Officer of ČEZ.
VULOG follows new trends in individual transport, leading not only to zero-emission traffic and a more efficient use of cars, but also to related changes in the understanding of ownership. “VULOG responds to the rapidly growing demand for sharing of green cars in cities by offering a technology solution for carsharing operators who offer affordable car rental to their end customers. Young people between 20 and 30 years of age no longer see any social value in the ownership of a car; they prefer sharing cars according to their current needs. Parents with children also often prefer renting a car instead of buying a second car into the family. The global carsharing market is growing and we expect it to grow more than fourfold by 2020,” explains Petr Míkovec, Chief Executive Officer of INVEN CAPITAL.
VULOG is the fifth investment of INVEN CAPITAL in the cleantech sector, and the first outside Germany. ČEZ, through INVEN CAPITAL, has already acquired a stake in Sunfire; a company developing and putting into industrial production the most progressive energy technologies that help reduce CO2 emissions and develop decentralized energy facilities. Another acquisition concerned sonnen, the world’s No. 1 in the manufacture of smart battery energy storage systems for homes. By investing in tado°, ČEZ entered the sector of smart thermostats for the control of heat and/or cooling on top of its smart customer solutions for electricity. This year, INVEN CAPITAL invested in Cloud & Heat Technologies, a company that developed technology for energy utilization of heat from local datacenters.
Since its establishment in 2006, VULOG has been a global leader in carsharing technology offering a comprehensive Software-as-a-Service platform and enabling carsharing operators to provide services to their end customers. VULOG’s solution connects OEM embedded hardware or Vulog’s robust in-car technology with a powerful mobility platform, expert back-end management for the operation of a service, advanced data analytics tools and white-label mobile applications for the customer. Customers of VULOG include carsharing operators on four continents; from Europe (emov in Madrid or Panek in Warsaw), to North America (EVO in Vancouver), South America (Urbano in Sao Paulo) and New Zealand (Mevo in Wellington). Their global offer includes thousands of cars (full electric and hybrids).
INVEN CAPITAL is a venture capital fund of CEZ Group. The strategy of INVEN CAPITAL is to identify opportunities for investing in innovative and growing smart energy companies in Europe. It focuses primarily on growth investment opportunities in the later stage with a business model proven by realized earnings and with long-term growth potential. Companies in the portfolio of INVEN CAPITAL can take advantage of CEZ Group’s extensive expert knowledge, client base, and technology synergies for their further development. The portfolio of INVEN CAPITAL includes some of the most innovative clean-tech companies, such as sonnen, Sunfire, tado° and Cloud & Heat.
Martin Schreier, ČEZ Spokesman for Renewable Sources