Centrica Innovations: EV route planner will make your day

Andreas Atkins

By Andreas Atkins
Head of Electric Vehicle Strategy for Property

Andreas Atkins talks about our Centrica EV Challenge – designed to find start-ups with the right solutions to help aid widespread EV adoption.

Earlier this year, Centrica launched the Centrica Electric Vehicle (EV) Challenge, the goal of which was to find tech start-ups with ideas and technologies that can help solve some of the potential roadblocks to widespread EV adoption. We termed these, human problems.

To start to explore viable technical solutions to these problems we invited businesses from the strong Israeli tech start-up community to pitch for a share of a £25k paid pilot in the UK.  

The next step of our challenge was a pitch day in Tel Aviv for the 12 shortlisted start-ups. The panel was made up of judges from our Investment Ventures, Product and Mobility Ventures teams, who chose ‘Make My Day’ as the winner of the pilot. 

Make My Day was founded in 2017 by Cnaan Aviv and Nisan Katz. Together they developed a smart route planning algorithm for EV drivers, to help them to find the optimal way to charge the vehicle.

The platform takes information from the driver’s diary and combines it with the status of the vehicle’s battery and maps an optimal route for the day, including where and when to charge the EV. 

It’s a solution that can be used by private drivers and company fleet drivers and is operational in Israel, Germany and Brazil. The pilot with Centrica will be the first such platform in the UK.

The quality of the pitches was so good that we’ve kept in touch with two further businesses to support their progress too. 

There are sure to be numerous challenges as we transition to an electrified transport future, but we believe that smart technology has a key role to play in what is a real meeting of both the energy and transport sectors. 

Centrica Mobility Ventures (CMV) was formed to explore opportunities in the emerging electric vehicles and broader mobility space, taking a three to five year forward view of the industry and informing Centrica’s strategic and tactical path. We are focusing on three key segments of the EV market – automotive OEMs, fleets and property – whose needs align to Centrica’s core capabilities around energy supply and optimisation; infrastructure provision and management; insurance products and services. 

We are also looking to partner with other organisations to tackle some of the fundamental challenges that will be faced by corporate and consumer EV users as deployment reaches scale. 

Looking to the future, we will enhance our digital capability, helping to ensure that customer’s homes and cars become ever more connected. We will offer a wider range of energy tariffs that include the installation of charging facilities, and will include flexibility to optimise charging at both home and work using our REstore grid balancing software, that can unlock additional revenues for EV users.

We know that demand on the UK’s electricity network could double by 2050 – partly due to the transition toward electric vehicles, so will look for technology solutions to overcome localised power constraints and deliver a decarbonised transport future built around a resilient charging infrastructure. 

If you are interested to learn more about Centrica and its Mobility Venture, please contact me at andreas.atkins@centrica.com.