FLO charges ahead with $136 million CAD to expand network, product line

EV charging firm sees support from EDC, CDPQ, Investissement Québec, and more in latest financing round.

Québec City-based electric vehicle (EV) charging tech firm FLO has raised $136 million CAD in new funding to support its geographic and product line expansion.

A spokesperson for FLO told BetaKit that a “substantial majority” of the round consisted of Series E equity financing, with the minority consisting of non-dilutive funding. 

“FLO is a prime example of the success of Canadian cleantech and the positive impacts that medium-segment companies have on the Canadian economy.”

The equity portion was led by Export Development Canada (EDC), with support from the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), Investissement Québec, the Business Development Bank of Canada, Energy Impact Partners, and MacKinnon, Bennett & Company.

This is not EDC’s first investment in FLO. The Crown corporation first backed the company in 2020 through its Investment Matching Program, and later via the Export Guarantee Program.

With this latest round of financing, Erik Brien-Wright, a partner at EDC’s mid-market growth capital division, will join FLO’s board of directors.

“We are glad that FLO’s financing partners share our vision: long-term growth, a profitable business model and strategic market expansion via both the sale and ownership of reliable infrastructure,” FLO CFO Francis Baillargeon said in a statement.

FLO offers smart EV charging solutions for both residential and commercial applications, as well as software solutions to manage its chargers. The company also operates an EV charging network of more than 100,000 charging stations across North America, and claims to see over 1.5 million charging events every month.

The startup was founded in 2009 by CEO and president Louis Tremblay. Initially known as AddEnérgie, the company sold its first charging station in 2011. A year later, FLO was named the official supplier of Electric Circuit, and by 2015, had installed 5,000 charging stations and entered the residential market segment. In 2022, the company opened its first production facility south of the border, in Auburn Hills, Mich.

Last year, the startup partnered with the Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB) to bring more than 2,000 fast charging ports to Canada by 2027. CIB provided a $220-million loan commitment to FLO as part of that partnership.

RELATED: Is Canada ready for an EV future?

A recent Bloomberg analysis of global EV adoption rates reveals that by the end of last year, five percent of new car sales in over 30 countries—and 9.4 percent in Canada—were purely electric, which the analysis says is signalling the onset of mass adoption. 

FLO is one of the businesses looking to capitalize on this trend, and it has been gaining traction, according to its own reports. Per the spokesperson, energy transferred across the FLO network last year was up 64 percent, while its installed base of commercial chargers increased by 35 percent in its last fiscal year.

The new financing will be used to support FLO’s growth in the United States and Canadian markets, as well as accelerate the rollout of its newest products: a dual-port “ultra-fast” charger and the next generation of residential chargers.

The company claims its new Ultra charger will charge most new EVs to 80 percent in 15 minutes with 320kW of power. According to the US Department of Transportation, comparable chargers can take 20 minutes to an hour to reach the same level of charge. The charger is in production, with deliveries to customers set to begin this month.

In May, FLO also announced the next-gen version of its at-home EV charger, which includes stronger, weather-resistant enclosures, two connector options, embedded heat sensors to protect the charger, and smart charging via the FLO app, that allows users to set up charging schedules, check charging speeds, and restrict usage.

“FLO is a prime example of the success of Canadian cleantech and the positive impacts that medium-segment companies have on the Canadian economy,” Guillermo Freire, senior vice president of EDC’s mid-market group, and responsible for EDC’s cleantech practice, said in a statement.

“We have witnessed their impressive growth over a short period, and we look forward to seeing them leverage this equity financing to scale across North America and deliver their next generation of innovative network-connected EV charging products and solutions that enable a low-carbon future,” Freire added.

Feature image courtesy of FLO.

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle is a Vancouver-based writer with 5+ years of experience in communications and journalism and a lifelong passion for telling stories. For over two years, she has reported on all sides of the Canadian startup ecosystem, from landmark venture deals to public policy, telling the stories of the founders putting Canadian tech on the map.

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