Drake Star advises EV charging firm ubitricity on sale to Shell

27 January 2021 Consultancy.uk 4 min. read

Energy firm Shell has purchased electric vehicle charging company ubitricity. The shareholders of ubitricity were advised on the deal by consultants from Drake Star Partners and lawyers from Gleiss Lutz.

Founded in 2008, ubitricity is a company specialising in the provision of solutions for charging and billing electric vehicles (EVs). The firm’s name stems from “ubiquitous electricity,” reflecting its mission to provide “Electricity, for Everyone, Everywhere.” Due to this ambition, the Berlin headquartered ubitricity has become known for its retrofitted lamp post chargers far beyond its domestic market. The German origin firm is already one of the largest public EV charge point operators in the UK with over 2,400 on-street charge points – 13% of the country’s current market share.

As the oil and gas industry faces growing pressure to cut its carbon emissions, the success of ubitricity has attracted investment from Shell. On-street charging is considered crucial to the success of electric vehicles because the option is likely to be more convenient for drivers, particularly in cities.

Drake Star advises EV charging firm Ubitricity on sale to ShellThe importance of this market is only set to grow throughout this decade, and the deal – which is expected to be finalised by the end of the year – is set to accelerate the race to corner the market in electric vehicle charging – as energy companies look to retool their businesses to cope with the UK’s plan to ban the sale of new fossil fuel vehicles by 2030.

To this end, Shell was one of the first energy companies to set out plans for “green” forecourts in the UK – offering electric charging, hydrogen cell refuelling and biofuels rather than petrol and diesel. The summer of 2019 also saw it launch the UK’s first 150kW electric vehicle charger, which can charge a car in half an hour.

Explaining what ubitricity’s value proposition adds to Shell’s efforts, the German firm’s CEO Lex Hartman said, “With every new EV on the street, the need for EV charging infrastructure increases rapidly. ubitricity’s lamp post charger is fast to install and nearly invisible because it fits completely inside the lamp post column. For 40-60% of city residents without a private parking spot, on-street parking is the norm, and charging the car while it’s parked on the street next to a lamp post anyway will be the go-to-solution. Only a connected car will be helpful for the energy grid in the future, and that’s why we need at least as many charge points as EVs.”

This acquisition will enable Shell, the number one mobility retailer in the world, to expand into the on-street EV charging market. For ubitricity, meanwhile, the transaction secures a strong strategic partnership, positioning it well to accelerate the next phase of its growth strategy, while emphasising the increased demand for a diverse variety of charging options.


Drake Star Partners was the exclusive financial advisor to ubitricity’s shareholders throughout the process. The continuously increasing complexity of sustainable transportation is one of Drake Star Partners’ core focus areas – a key criteria for this transaction.

The firm was well positioned for the project, and conducted a competitive, global, and entirely virtual M&A process, in order to find the idea partner for the firm. Drake Star Partners’ deal team consisted of Amsterdam-based Sherief Rahim and Thomas Smal. Meanwhile, legal counsel was provided by Gleiss Lutz experts Martin Viciano Gofferje and Johannes Schrägle.

Rahim, a Principal at Drake Star Partners, commented, “We are thrilled to have advised ubitricity and its shareholders in this highly strategic transaction. E-mobility has clearly reached a tipping point and through this synergetic transaction, ubitricity is geared to lead its next growth phase in a sector that is bound for hyper growth. Becoming part of Shell will allow ubitricity to capture the enormous market opportunity.”

Completion is subject to regulatory clearance, but once the transaction closes it will be will the seventh consecutive deal within the rapidly growing EV charging ecosystem led by the Drake Star’s Amsterdam based Mobility and Energy Transition team. The firm previously led the sale of NewMotion to Shell, and the sale of Pod Point to EDF and Legal & General.

Frank Verbeek, Head of the Global Mobility and Energy Transition team at Drake Star Partners added, “We once more see the proof that bold entrepreneurship will be rewarded with additional value for all stakeholders. With Shell, ubitricity will reach next levels, and proven innovation will show its benefits on an even larger scale.”