Brar is taking over from former CEO Jonathan Read at a time when the Blnk plug-in vehicle charging network continues to grow and has already gotten data on over 38 million electric miles. We asked Brar a few questions about his new position via email:
Where do you see Blink going in the next few years?
How does your transition from CFO to CEO change the company (if at all)?
We are excited about where the company is now - we have an industry-leading product, the most chargers in the ground in the US, the most data recorded of EV driving behavior ever, and a JV ramping up in China that will expand our sales footprint. Additionally, we will focus increasingly on commercial sales and expanding the industrial markets, and will invest in product hardware and software improvements that will deepen customer engagement. Like any business we have our challenges, but we are a leader in an industry that will see exponential levels of growth over the next five to ten years.
How will it change your work load / work style?
We're on strong footing today. As we continue to build out the largest deployment of charge infrastructure in history, we will draw on the company's demonstrated market leadership as we transition to focus more heavily on commercial sales. And we'll build on partnerships with Kohls, IKEA, Cracker Barrel and other commercial customers to continue leading the Blink network into new markets while returning value to shareholders.
For more on Blink and Ecotality, read this report from EVS26.
My day to day functions will change. We have promoted Susie Herrmann to acting CFO and we have an incredible team of talent in our Executive team – Murray Jones, COO, Greg Fioriti, Chief Revenue Officer, Don Karner, Chief Innovation Officer, to name a few – who will continue our hard work in moving this company forward and delivering the highest level of customer satisfaction to our residential and commercial hosts alike. My work style will remain steadfast in ensuring we are operating effectively and we continue to deliver value to both our customers and shareholders as well.
San Francisco – ECOtality, Inc. (NASDAQ: ECTY), a leader in clean electric transportation and storage technologies, announced today that H. Ravi Brar will succeed Jonathan Read as the new president and chief executive officer of the company, effective today.
"This is an exciting time for ECOtality and for electric transportation and I am eager to take on the opportunities that lie ahead," Brar said. "As ECOtality begins transitioning from the implementation of our EV Project towards a shift to commercial sales and the launch of our Blink network in new markets around the country, we are perfectly poised to take this growing industry to the next level."
Brar joined ECOtality in November 2010 as chief financial officer. Previously, Brar served as executive vice president and chief financial officer at Exigen Services, Inc., a pre-IPO global software development outsourcing company based in Russia and China. Prior to that, Brar was chief financial officer and chief operating officer for Pac-West Telecom and worked for Xerox in international business development and domestic finance, sales and operational roles for nearly a decade.
"We are excited to have someone of Ravi Brar's leadership caliber ready to step up," said ECOtality board member Andrew Tang, managing director, ABB Technology Ventures. "Ravi's breadth of experience is ideal for ECOtality as it becomes a sales driven organization and grows and expands into new territory. When he came in as CFO, we envisioned him stepping into this CEO role at the appropriate time. That time has now come."
"I am proud of what we have built with ECOtality," Read said, "and there is a tremendous growth opportunity ahead of it. One of the reasons we chose Ravi as CFO was that we knew he would be a great succession candidate. As I move on to explore new ventures after seven rewarding years with ECOtality, I know that with strong leaders like Ravi Brar and our new COO, Murray Jones, I leave this company in good hands."
Read, an entrepreneur at heart, had served as ECOtality's president and CEO since its founding in 2005, and is leaving to explore new development opportunities. Read previously founded the Park Plaza International hotel chain and prior to that was chairman and CEO of Shakey's Worldwide.
In addition to ascending to CEO, Brar has also been named to ECOtality's board. Brar and the company's board have named Susie Herrmann acting CFO.
Brar holds a BS in Managerial Economics from the University of California, Davis and a MBA from the Katz Graduate School of Business at the University of Pittsburgh.
About ECOtality, Inc.
ECOtality, Inc. (NASDAQ:ECTY), headquartered in San Francisco, California, is a leader in clean electric transportation and storage technologies. Through innovation, acquisitions, and strategic partnerships, ECOtality accelerates the market applicability of advanced electric technologies to replace carbon-based fuels. For more information about ECOtality, Inc., please visit www.ecotality.com.
This release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. All forward-looking statements are inherently uncertain as they are based on current expectations and assumptions concerning future events or future performance of the company. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which are only predictions and speak only as of the date hereof. In evaluating such statements, prospective investors should review carefully various risks and uncertainties identified in this release and matters set in the company's SEC filings. These risks and uncertainties could cause the Company's actual results to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements.