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Zouk Capital increases its commitment in Zest to £105m through the Charging Infrastructure Investment Fund

Zest, the certified B Corporation for EV infrastructure, today announced that Zouk Capital, manager of the Charging Infrastructure Investment Fund (CIIF), has increased its commitment to £105m.

The investment has been made in response to Zest’s increasing commercial momentum as it converts a burgeoning number of strategic contracts into large scale deployments. These include rapid charging stations at 75 sites with Transport for London’s Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Delivery (EVID) program, and the UK’s most concentrated EV charging deployment with Hackney Council.

The number of fully electric vehicles registered in the UK reached almost one million by the end of last year, with nearly a third of them registered during 2023. There has also been healthy growth in the number of public charge points deployed, now over 53,000, but it is still a long way short of the government’s target of 300,000 available by 2030.

Working through Zest and a handful of other portfolio companies, the CIIF’s goal is to accelerate the deployment of electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure throughout the UK. The CIIF is a £420m public-private fund backed by HM Treasury (through UK Infrastructure Bank) and by sustainable private investors. The fund is managed by Zouk Capital, who are focused on investing in sustainable infrastructure and climate technology, and was designed to scale-up open-access, public EV charging networks in the UK increasing its accessibility and convenience, which in turn will help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution from transportation.

Robin Heap, Zest CEO said: “We work with organisations across the public sector, with the commercial real estate sector and with destination brands. They are all looking for the same thing when it comes to EV infrastructure. They want a partner with the resources and capability to build at scale. A partner with a long-term commitment to providing a great customer experience. A partner operating to the highest standards of climate sustainability and social equity.

Our increasing momentum is a direct result of working to these core principles, creating the blueprint for mass deployment. The support from Zouk and long-term stability that the Fund provides has been vital to our success so far and we welcome this additional commitment”

Massimo Resta, Partner at Zouk Capital said: “This latest commitment from the CIIF comes as Zest converts its commercial momentum into rapid deployments across the UK, delivering some of the UK’s most strategic EV infrastructure projects.

Zest has the ability to deliver at scale whilst maintaining the highest standards of social responsibility, helping to tackle climate change, boost local economic growth, and make EV a realistic option for everyone in society.”

Zest is a certified B Corporation
B Corp Certification is a designation that a business is meeting high standards of verified performance, accountability, and transparency on factors from employee benefits to supply chain practices and input materials. In order to achieve certification, a company must:

  • Demonstrate high social and environmental performance by achieving a B Impact Assessment score of 80 or above and passing a risk review.
  • Make a legal commitment by changing their corporate governance structure to be accountable to all stakeholders, not just shareholders.
  • Exhibit transparency by allowing information about their performance measured against B Lab’s standards to be publicly available on their B Corp profile on B Lab’s website.  

As leaders in the movement for economic systems change, B Corps reap remarkable benefits. They build trust with consumers, communities, and suppliers; attract and retain employees; and draw mission-aligned investors. As they are required to undergo the verification process every three years in order to recertify, B Corps are by definition also focused on continuous improvement, leading to their long-term resiliency.

More info: Zest’s B Impact Score