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Starbucks Takes Lead in EV Infrastructure Race through Volvo Partnership


The first EV charging station installation at a Starbucks location in Provo, Utah. Volvo Cars USA press image.

Starbucks is helping to lead the literal charge of electric vehicle travel, today unveiling its first EV charging stations in partnership with Volvo Cars USA and charger-maker ChargePoint Holdings.

Although the EV machines do not affect the company’s multifaceted global supply chain, nor do they reduce emissions or resource usage within participating Starbucks stores, the company is pitching the partnership as part of its longer-term environmental sustainability commitment.

Volvo-SBUX-CP Patio Vert

Volvo Cars USA press image.

That’s not to say the partnership isn’t forward-looking. Most major automotive brands and manufacturers have vowed to dramatically increase production of electric vehicles by the end of this decade. For its part, Volvo has pledged to become a fully electric car company by 2030, while aspiring for 50% fully automatic sales by 2025.

Considering the fact that electric vehicles take anywhere from 30 minutes to half a day or more to reach a full charge, Starbucks now has plans to be there for car owners who may have some time on their hands.

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The first four charging stations in the partnership — available free or at a discounted rate to Volvo users or for a small fee to other EV drivers — just rolled out in Provo, Utah. According to the partnership, as many as 60 DC fast chargers in total will be introduced to 15 Starbucks store locations in a 1,350-mile stretch from suburban Denver to Seattle.

The route winds through national forests and major community hubs from the Colorado Rockies to the Starbucks Support Center (headquarters) in Seattle. The stations will be placed approximately 100 miles apart from one another, offering new infrastructure for EVs — as well as some new sales for Starbucks.

A press release from Volvo sums up the strategy: “While customers’ cars are recharging outside, drivers can relax comfortably inside with their favorite Starbucks beverages.”

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