Pionix secures a €5.5M seed funding round to develop a standardized open-source software for EV charging infrastructure

Article by
AXC Team
Article Date
May 21, 2023
Happy founders and investors after 6 hours of notary process - Frankfurt – May 9th 2023

By Mathias Flattin and Leopoldine Petri

Axeleo Proptech 1, in its 14th deal, participates in Pionix's seed round along with Yabeo (Germany), Pale blue dot (Sweden), and mobility expert investors. The goal is to streamline the integration of EV charging systems through an open-source software solution.

Accelerating Towards Net Zero Infrastructure

To achieve Net Zero targets, the number of EV chargers must significantly increase, estimated to reach 722M charging stations by 2050. However, the current proliferation of charging point manufacturers has resulted in a fragmented network with diverse software layers. This lack of standardization poses challenges for maintenance teams, as well as stakeholders such as car manufacturers, regulators, utility companies, and users.

Addressing Complexity with Open-SourceSolutions

Charging points consist of hardware electronics, a display system, and a software stack that mainly covers basic functionalities. Presently, each manufacturer develops their own software stack, leading to compatibility issues and hindering innovation. This multi-segmented market, characterized by geographical variations, multiple suppliers, and diverse technologies, limits the progress of the industry. Pionix Founders believe that open source can bring transformative speed and disruptive power to establish de-facto standards, enabling all users to compete effectively in this rapidly growing market.

EVerest: A Shared Base Software Layer

Pionix is developing an open-source software called EVerest to create a standardized base layer for EV charging systems. By sharing a code base, EVerest enhances compatibility and allows charging point manufacturers to focus on network expansion, unique selling points (USPs), and innovation. EVerest has been recognized as an official Linux Foundation Energy Project, enabling developers, operators, and users to collaborate and unify electric vehicle charging infrastructure. This standardization eliminates the compatibility issues that have previously hindered the growth of the EV industry.

Driving innovation in Urban Spaces through efficient Infrastructure

Efficient energy and mobility infrastructures are crucial for urban development. As cities strive to match the demographic projections of 2050 while transitioning to electric transportation and aiming for net zero emissions, accelerating infrastructure construction becomes imperative. Pionix's contribution to standardizing EV charging infrastructure addresses a significant urban planning challenge. Beyond efficiency gains, Pionix's software also facilitates positive environmental impacts. Smart charging prioritizes the use of green electricity, bidirectional charging utilizes car batteries as storage solutions, and optimizing charger lifecycles reduces waste. By 2035, Pionix efforts could result in a reduction of over 500 mega tons of CO2 emissions. Since 2020, AXC’s team has been working closely with RTE – a Limited Partner in the fund and an opinion leader on the energy market. RTE sets micro grids as a goal to limit infrastructure cost while developing renewables. Pionix's work aligns with their goal of deploying renewables through micro grids. Furthermore, RTE highlights the challenges faced by network managers in dealing with multiple EV charger operators, each adhering to different standards.

The Right Team and Timing

Bloomberg reports that over 290 million charging points need to be installed by 2040 to support fleet electrification, emphasizing the urgent need for unified EV charging development. Pionix has already established partnerships with component suppliers like "Chargebyte" and OEMs like"Ilumen". With the market readiness for such a solution and a strong founding team, including repeat entrepreneurs who previously had a startup acquired by Intel, Pionix is poised for success.

Pionix raised €5.5M in an oversubscribed Seed round, backed by pre-seed and seed investors from across Europe, including Yabeo, Pale blue dot, Vireo, Mobility fund, and Angels. 

Warm congratulations to Marco, Johanna, Cornelius, Benjamin & Falko.