What is more valuable than wisdom, or the experience of others? Nothing in my mind. Recording the This Week in Cleantech podcast I get to hear so much insight and wisdom, born from successes and failures and everywhere in between. That is why I absolutely love recording it and sharing that wisdom, and those learnings with others. This is cleantech Gold dust! I get to hear so many inspirational stories, novel Ideas, and the abstract and random twists and turns leading Founders and CEOs take to find success. This week for example we explored what makes a cleantech entrepreneur successful, is it qualifications? luck?… or is it resilience? Clearly it’s usually a bit of all three, but never underestimate the importance of timing….or resilience.

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In the latest podcast I spoke with Gideon van Dijk, CEO & Co-Founder of Chargetrip who, in a wide ranging discussion talked about how resilience is crucial in the face of all the challenges an entrepreneur faces but particularly now; about how luck plays its role as an entrepreneur and also why the Emobility market may be facing a tougher challenge after Covid 19.

Here is my summary of the key insights:

1.           Resilience is a fundamental skill in leaders and their people. Right now, when uncertainty and often downright fear are everywhere, leaders in every business need to be resilient. But Gideon points to the character of cleantech entrepreneurs faced with multiple challenges throughout the development of their businesses from errors of timing to the challenges of finding funding. Being able to navigate a route to success through these challenges has always been important but will now take on ever greater significance. “I think every entrepreneur has their fair share of failures..but it’s how you deal with that and how you go on that in the end gets you to where you are now.”

2.           What is luck? We all talk about people who make their own luck, but Gideon nails the real reason entrepreneurs seem lucky. It’s their readiness to take advantage of unexpected developments which can look in hindsight like luck but in actual fact it’s a key component of being successful “you have to be ready, and you need to be there every time, at the right time, with the right solution. And then you’re giving yourself the best shot.”

3.           Looking forward I spoke with Gideon about his predictions for the Emobility market and how in his view there are real challenges ahead. In many countries where take up has been significant the impetus has been government support in some form. Gideon believes that subsidies as a tool of government policy will now be under severe pressure with budgets under the strain of Covid19 rescue packages. “We’ve had good subsidy rules around Europe, but I’m thinking they’re one of the first ones to go if nations need cash again”.

Hear more from Gideon on our latest podcast here

Please make sure you subscribe to the podcast so you don’t miss future inspiration. We’re on all the usual platforms, and can subscribe directly here. As ever I welcome your feedback, questions and suggestions for future guests.

Best regards


What’s it all about?

Having worked with EVBox for some time it was good to visit their new, highly-sustainable office space in Amsterdam, and to catch up with CEO Kristof Vereenooghe.  EV Charging infrastructure is such an important area for the success of the eMobility transition. We discuss interoperability, collaboration, the challenges faced by the Auto OEM’s and in particular the challenges of moving from start-up, to hypergrowth scale-up and running an international business where, no territory has the same policies, regulations or market dynamics.

About our guest

Kristof Vereenooghe is the CEO of EVBox, the global market leader in charging solutions for electric vehicles and related cloud services. Mr. Vereenooghe is a proven technology executive with deep SaaS-Cloud software expertise and a track record in transforming startups into key players in their industry. Before joining EVBox, Mr. Vereenooghe had a leading role within different startups that have become key players in their industry such as Bynder, LUMA Marketing Technologies and Xeikon.

EVBox is the leading global manufacturer of electric vehicle charging stations and charging management software. With over 60,000 charging points across more than 45 countries worldwide, EVBox helps electric drivers get access to charging infrastructure at any point in their journey.

Founded in 2010, EVBox made its breakthrough when the market for electric vehicles (EVs) was still in its infancy. Its founders set their hearts and eyes on a clear concept: a fully modular charging station that facilitates easy installation, maintenance upgrades, and above all, uncompromising quality and durability.

Soon, EVBox became the sole supplier of public charging infrastructure in cities such as Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Monaco. Meanwhile, EVBox played an active role in promoting Smart Charging technologies and roaming of charging infrastructure with industry partners and public organizations.

In 2017, EVBox was acquired by energy utility and global service provider ENGIE, who identified EVBox as a disruptive, leading cleantech company making a difference in the fast-growing industry of electric mobility. In 2018, EVBox acquired the ultra-fast charging station manufacturer EVTronic, adding 700 previously installed fast charging stations to EVBox’s European network.

Today, with projects running across Europe, North America, South America, and Asia, EVBox moves forward by perfecting its original recipe with a second generation of hardware and software that are easy to use, energy-efficient, scalable, and future-proof.

Kristof Vereenooghe on Linked In

EVBox on Twitter


News stories discussed this week

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I’m very keen to hear feedback on the podcast and my guests, and to hear your suggestions for future guests or topics. Contact via the website, or Twitter. If you do enjoy the podcast, please write a review on iTunes, or your usual podcast platform, and tell your cleantech friends about us. That would be much appreciated.