ECOtality, Inc., a San Francisco-based electric transportation and storage technologies company, has recently announced plans to install over 225 new electric charging stations at select Kroger Co. stores. A majority of the new installations will be level 2 (quick charge) electric charging stations, while the remaining 25 installations will be DC Fast Chargers.

Kroger Co. already operates 74 electric charging stations in the states of Oregon and Washington—60 in Oregon and 14 in Washington. The new installation plans will bring that number just fewer than 300.

“As plug-in electric and hybrid cars are becoming more popular with our customers, we are pleased to offer the convenience of electric vehicle charging stations at more of our stores in markets with the highest demand,” said Keith Dailey, Kroger spokesperson. “Kroger is excited to contribute to the growth of this national network.”

The new electric charging stations will be mainly located in the western United States, including Kroger stores in the Los Angeles, Phoenix, and San Diego areas.

Kroger Charge Station

An electric vehicle owner activates her card at an ECOtality electric charging station. The company will install over 225 new charging stations at select Kroger stores in the Los Angeles, Phoenix, and San Diego areas. Credit: ECOtality.

According to Bloomberg Businessweek, this focus on the western United States is part of ECOtality’s marketing strategy, since the west holds the majority of the market for electric vehicle sales.

The electric charging stations, which ECOtality refers to as “Blink chargers,” will cost Kroger approximately $1.5 million to install. However, the company has found that electric car owners spend significantly more time inside their grocery stores than conventional vehicle owners do.

ECOtality CEO Ravi Brar emphasized this point in a recent press release statement.

“Retailers across the country are quickly realizing the benefits of installing our Blink chargers. Independent research shows that Blink card holders routinely reward those establishments with more time in their stores and repeat business,” stated Brar. “Kroger not only recognizes this value, but continues to show its commitment to be a leader in sustainability for the food retail industry. We are thrilled that the nation’s largest supermarket chain, Kroger, chose to expand its EV charging station roll-out with Blink.”

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