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L.A. Car Charging Firm Being Investigated by FBI Acquired

by Chris Clarke
on May 6, 2013 12:15 PM
Car charging stations in a Chicago drugstore parking lot | Photo: Kevin Zolkiewicz/Flickr/Creative Commons License

A Los Angeles-based company that builds charging stations for electric cars has been sold, making its new owner the largest electric car charging station network in the U.S. In a deal reached last week after months of negotiation, Car Charging Group Inc. bought the L.A.-based startup 350Green for about $5.2 million.

Car Charging Group, which has already acquired the electric vehicles charging companies Beam Charging and EVPass in 2013, now claims the mantle of largest publicly accessible electric vehicle charging network in the U.S., with thousands of stations across the country.

350Green started out with high hopes in Los Angeles, as the first fledgling company accepted into the L.A. Cleantech Incubator (LACI) program in 2011. LACI also helped negotiate the terms of the company’s acquisition by Car Charging Group.

The buyout comes less than a month after the Chicago Tribune reported that the FBI is looking into reports that 350Green had underpaid — or failed to pay — vendors in the Chicago area involved with the firm’s contract to set up a network of charging stations in the Chicagoland area. According to Tribune reporter Julie Wernau, 350Green was supposed to build hundreds of charging stations in Chicago and its suburbs by 2011, but the project was never finished. 350Green backed out of similar arrangements in 19 other cities when the Chicago project faltered.
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