Edward Morgan was quite pleased to see the number of electric vehicle commercials during the most recent Super Bowl.
As founder and CEO of Revitalize Charging Solutions Inc., the greater the number of EVs, the more customers for the company’s commercial and now home charging stations.
“In 2015, you saw no commercials with electric cars,” he said. “People correlated electric vehicles to being a very expensive product. So I think, at that time, that’s what slowed it down. But as they got cheaper and batteries started to decrease in cost, more infrastructure was starting to be put out on the ground. You started to see people start to navigate toward electric vehicles as a whole.”
Those vehicles need fuel – in this case, an electrical charge.
Revitalize Charging Solutions, a TechFW client, is a maker of electric vehicle charging equipment and is expanding from the commercial market into the direct-to-consumer space. Clients include the city of Arlington, Hillwood, Cook Children’s and Acre Distilling Co.
The firm has more than 50 charging sites in the area and expects to have about 150 by the end of the year. The company recently received UL safety certification for its REV+Dual home electric vehicle charger.
While the company has been selling in the business-to-business market until now, it will have its REV+ products sold through Amazon, Home Depot and other retail websites by April, Morgan said.
“This is a revolutionary home charger in so many ways,” Morgan said of the REV+ products. “Most importantly, two electric vehicles can be charged simultaneously. REV+ is capable of charging an electric vehicle up to eight times faster than the level one OEM charger that an EV driver receives when purchasing an electric vehicle.”
“With the price of electric cars decreasing, you will start to see homes with two electric cars. The REV+Dual Home Charger features a range of ways in which users can monitor and manage their EV charging experience.”
The timing now seems right for the company as EV sales grew to 6.5 million vehicles in 2021, up 108% over 2020, according to analyst group Canalys.
On Monday, the Biden administration announced a $5 billion investment to build EV charging stations across the country as part of the administration’s $1 trillion infrastructure bill. The EV program will distribute the money to qualifying states over a five-year period.
“You’re seeing the government starting to continue to push money into that space to get the infrastructure where it needs to be,” said Morgan. “Our goal is we just want to be a part of that, right? We want to be a part of the catalyst to create that bridge. It’s still got a long way to go, especially in rural areas. But we’re excited about where the industry has gone as a whole. We see that it’s moving into the right direction.”
Revitalize Charging Solutions was formed in 2015 after Morgan left AT&T, where he worked as a manager for 18 years. His company bootstrapped for the first four years using available funds and sales to develop the product.
In 2019, the company received funding from Cowtown Angels and some other investors. It is about to open another round of funding as it adds employees and expands into new markets.
The company currently has three employees, using contractors as needed for other needs, such as software development.
Revitalize Charging Solutions received some additional government help via a pilot project with the city of Fort Worth in the early days of development.
“We did a couple of pilots with them so that helped us make sure that we were looking at the charges from the perspective of the end user, consumer, which helped us to redesign some our units because we realized when we first started, obviously, like any other business, you think you know what the customer wants but you really don’t,” he said.
Morgan says the company’s customers are not just buying a standalone charger when they purchase one of their products.
“When you think about the whole end-to-end process, most people will buy the charger from us, then they will host that charger on our network. We make sure that the data flows correctly within those chargers. We provide the maintenance, even down through the warranty. We handle all of that in the end,” he said. “We’re the eyes and ears of the customers that purchase these chargers, and we make sure that they are running smoothly 24/7.”
Tony Formby, founder of Acre Distilling Co. in downtown Fort Worth, installed one of the Revitalize Charging Solutions stations as part of its “Green Acre Initiative” in 2020. That year, Acre became what Formby believes is the first solar-powered distillery in the state.
“The station is under one of the solar arrays which are over the parking spaces in the back of Acre,” he said. “It’s part of our whole shift to change how we use and consume power. It’s been a great asset for us.”
When Revitalize Charging Solutions new REV+ units hit the consumer market, they will sell for $949, though there will likely be discounts, Morgan said.
“Our focus is to create a suite of REV+ brand products,” Morgan said. “We think it makes sense, and we already have a registered trademark on a Rev+ brand so we want to make sure that we have this whole family or suite of home, travel, B2B focus-based products that we can supply to each user type.”
Morgan said education and costs are the two big issues holding back the EV charger market at the moment.
“I think it always starts with that, specifically educating folks on just the industry as a whole,” he said.
Morgan notes that while many companies in the industry resell their products to companies that rebrand them, Revitalize Charging Solutions does not, allowing it to control the quality of the products and the user experience.
Cost issues are being eased as more subsidies are made available to end-users. Also, he said, some development companies are installing charging stations as part of new projects.
“If they install the projects as part of a new project, it is much cheaper than retrofitting into an existing location,” Morgan said.
Bob Francis is business editor for the Fort Worth Report. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.