Newmarket-based Spark EV secures £50k New Anglia Capital investment

Spark EV's technology in action.
Picture: Anna Karbownik

Spark EV's technology in action. Picture: Anna Karbownik - Credit: Archant

A pioneering technology company which aims to overcome a major hurdle hindering the adoption of electric vehicles by fleet managers has secured a £50,000 investment from New Anglia Capital.

Justin Ott of Spark EV, left, with Chris Dashper of New Anglia Capital.
Picture: Terry Pettit

Justin Ott of Spark EV, left, with Chris Dashper of New Anglia Capital. Picture: Terry Pettit - Credit: Archant

Spark EV, which has just expanded into new premises on the Lanwades Business Park in Kennett, near Newmarket, will use the investment to step up its business development.

Its plans include the addition of a trade manager to support overseas sales, particularly in Scandinavia where it is already receiving strong interest.

Spark EV, which was launched early last year, aims to improve the accuracy of predictions for the range of electric vehicles by combining its own research with work carried out by the University of Essex.

The Spark EV system, which analyses live driver, vehicle and other data, such as the weather and congestion, involves a combination of sensor technology, cloud-based machine learning analysis software and a smartphone app.

Fleet managers or drivers enter their proposed journey and get advice on whether they will be able to complete it - based on the live data, experience from previous trips and charge point locations.

The aim is to reassurance fleet managers and drivers that they will be able to complete jobs without running out of charge, so easing “range anxiety” and enabling them to make fuller use of vehicles by planning additional journeys

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Justin Ott, chief executive of Spark EV Technology, said: “Since we launched Spark EV last year we’ve seen increasing interest from fleet operators looking to move to electric vehicles, but who have been previously worried about efficiency and range anxiety.

“This new investment from New Anglia Capital, on top of money from the Low Carbon Innovation Fund, will help us meet this growing demand and target an estimated half a billion pound market with our AI-powered EV prediction solution.”

Andrew Proctor, a board member at New Anglia Capital, added: “The electric vehicle market is expanding enormously.

“Spark EV’s technology solves the key problem of anxiety over vehicle range, which is currently holding back the adoption of electric vehicles by fleets.

“We’re pleased to be able to support such a ground-breaking local business, and believe it has a bright future ahead of it.”

New Anglia Capital was launched with £2m of funding from the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) to stimulate enterprise, growth and job creation Suffolk and Norfolk.

It is a co-investment fund which aims to bring high growth potential businesses and independent “angel” investors together in order to kick-start new products and innovative ideas, particularly in sectors such as engineering, life sciences, agri-tech, health, energy, communications and digital.

Anglia Capital Group, a network of angel investors in Suffolk and Norfolk is working with New Anglia LEP as facilitator for the fund, which involves angel investors and New Anglia Capital each putting up 50% of the investment in successful applicants.

Entrepreneurs in Suffolk and Norfolk seeking start-up or early-growth stage investment capital for their businesses should apply via the Anglia Capital Group website.