Vianney Devienne, the new boss of Zaptec in France, has great ambitions to conquer the French electric vehicle charger market.
Zaptec succeeded in becoming the leading supplier in the Norwegian corporate market in just two years. Since then, the company has focused on establishing a local presence, with new Zaptec branches in Sweden, Germany, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Denmark. Now it’s France’s turn. Vianney Devienne, who recently took up the position of head of Zaptec’s new office in France, thinks it was high time for Zaptec to enter the French market.
An increasing number of French people are choosing electric vehicles
“The electric vehicle market in France is following the climbing trend across Europe. In 2021, we experienced a growth of 62 per cent in the number of electric vehicle registrations and 15 per cent of all new vehicle registrations. At this rate, it should be possible to exceed the target of one million electric vehicles in France by the end of 2022,” Vianney says. He highlights the support incentives from the Advenir programme, which has been extended to 2025 and provides private companies, public authorities and housing associations with financial support for the installation of charging points. Together with a growing used electric vehicle market this is creating exciting opportunities for new players.
Helping make electric vehicle charging simpler
Vianney has an extensive and varied background from the electric vehicle industry and he hopes that this will be advantageous in conquering the French market.
“Back in the in the 2010’s, I became the Director of Sales at DBT, a company that manufactures charging infrastructure for electric vehicles. We won the first major tenders to supply public AC infrastructure in Europe. We also signed a deal with Nissan Japan to produce a new rapid charger based on the best and cheapest technology available at the time and installed it all across Europe, together with partners in 15 countries,” he explains. Four years later in 2014, he helped establish GIREVE, as the Director of Sales and Marketing. At GIREVE, he contributed to improving and simplifying the user experience in electric vehicle charging.
“At the time, electric vehicle owners needed to have many different subscriptions in order to charge in France. You can now charge anywhere in France, but also in Europe, using thousands of charging points, with a simple identifier, which was made possible thanks to the roaming platform we developed from scratch,” he says.
Focus on the corporate market
Zaptec is an unknown brand in France and the competition in the electric vehicle charger market is fierce. Some of Zaptec’s competitors have been established in France for several years and new players enter the market every month. Despite this, Vianney has an ambition to become one of the top three charger suppliers in France in just a few years. Initially, the focus will be on the corporate market, where the promotion of the solutions will be aimed at decision-makers.
“To achieve the goal of becoming one of the top three suppliers, we need to collaborate with the best operators, electricians, installers and retailers in the industry to identify the best charging solutions for condominiums, companies and shopping centres. We will offer sustainable solutions using the most advanced technology on the market. In France, we will stand out through products and solutions that are user-friendly, quick to install and designed to evolve over time. They will also contribute to low operating and electricity costs,” he says.
Seeking committed employees
Vianney is looking forward to getting started on this task and he is currently in the process of building a team to challenge the French electric vehicle charger market.
“I look forward to having a team in place that shares values such as enthusiasm, commitment, specialist knowledge and creativity. And I am eager to establish Zaptec in France. We will start recruiting soon and I will be looking for people in sales, technical support, training, operations and marketing. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you think this could be for you or if you want to learn more about Zaptec!”