In a quick but fruitful three years in business, southwestern Ontario-based venture, ChargerQuest, has become Canada’s Electric Vehicle (EV) infrastructure company. Building one of the most comprehensive and innovative EV charging networks in the industry, ChargerQuest operates coast-to-coast, with chargers deployed in seven provinces across Canada and 2023 goals of deploying charging stations in every Canadian province and expanding into the U.S.
“Our biggest goal is to promote Electric Vehicle (EV) adoption and emission-free travel and, in doing so, run a business that benefits other business owners, EV drivers, and the health of our environment.”
The “aha” moment
Chatting over a coffee at a local cafe in Sarnia, Ontario in 2018, Co-Founders Christopher Misch and Stuart Browne ideated what is known today as ChargerQuest. Their mission was to develop a robust EV charging network throughout Canada in a way that would grow EV interest organically and expand Canada’s EV travel capabilities. Having been a pioneer in the electric vehicle industry through his tenured experience in early-stage EV companies, Misch relied on his industry expertise and connections to build ChargerQuest. With the original business idea jotted down on a coffee shop napkin, the pair have since successfully scaled their business and reached Canada-wide impact, seeing three times their year-over-year (YoY) revenue in 2022. They were also awarded the Limitless 2022 Breakthrough Award by TechAlliance of Southwestern Ontario, recognizing a technology-powered venture that has realized substantial growth and achieved success through leadership, market impact and innovation. “2022 was remarkable for us, with close to 100 percent utilization growth YoY on our charging assets that we deployed,” says Misch, “We established some of our biggest partnerships, which spoke to the power of our business model and brand. It was an incredible year, and we couldn’t have done it without our people and ecosystem supports, like TechAlliance.”
Understanding EV Adoption
ChargerQuest is a recent i.d.e.a. Fund recipient. Supported by a $10-million Government of Canada investment through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), the i.d.e.a. Fund is led by Innovation Guelph in partnership with five Regional Innovation Centres (RICs): WEtech Alliance, Haltech, Innovate Niagara, Innovation Factory and TechAlliance of Southwestern Ontario. The program helps high-potential ventures access the tools they need to succeed by providing financial and business advisory supports to develop or redesign products, services, processes, and technologies that reduce impacts on the environment and create made-in-Canada solutions.
Being welcomed back for a second year as a finalist for the Limitless ScaleUp Award, it is no surprise that ChargerQuest is forecasting an unforgettable 2023 —fuelled by its zero-emission mission and its dedicated and growing team. Utilizing the i.d.e.a. Fund to research and identify opportunistic properties for the deployment of more charging stations, the company executed the successful installation of those assets using data about EV-adoption rates, amenity proximity, demographics and population to decide which sites would add the most value for Canadians. This project meant building new channels of partnerships, which helps the host business partners build their own revenue by attracting local and travelling customers via EV-charging availability. “We saw ChargerQuest become a driving force in Canada’s eco-tourism boom throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and its rapid expansion is a testament to the belief that these Co-Founders have in their venture’s overall goals of both growth and environmental impact,” says Aman Samra, Startup Advisor of Venture Growth at TechAlliance.
What’s Next for ChargerQuest
Actively involved in a significant capital raise, ChargerQuest has seen an incredible uptake in outreach and is excited about executing its expansion through the upcoming year. Expanding across Canada with intent to double their network size for the second time in three years, the ChargerQuest Co-Founders are focused on human capital and talent to manage their network and remain innovative in the space. At the helm of another scale-up worthy year, business development and project management are taking centre stage, and the ChargerQuest team aims to continue amplifying the inherent value of creating an accessible EV-charging network across Canada to allow for more freedom for EV travellers and infrastructure that invites environmental sustainability.
To learn more about ChargerQuest or download their app to get routed to a charging station, go to chargerquest.com
To learn more about The i.d.e.a Fund go to techalliance.ca/idea-fund
To learn more about FedDev Ontario, go to https://ised-isde.canada.ca/site/feddev-ontario/en