Alok Dubey is the UK Country Manager for Monta. The company is the operating platform powering the electric vehicle (EV) ecosystem serving drivers, companies, cities and the electricity grid with one integrated software solution.
Dubey has a background in electrical and electronics engineering and has worked around the globe in commercial roles. This includes Bolt, Gett and Argyle where he gained valuable experience in the emobility space before moving on to Monta.
Here, he’s expanding the team in the UK and building awareness of the company in supporting the transition to electric vehicles. The company is expanding and the only all-in-one electric vehicle charging management platform recently announced it had closed an additional €30 million as part of a Series A+ funding round.
The company will use the funding to open up new markets, create transparency within the electricity market and digitalise the power grid infrastructure. It’s an exciting time for the company and emobility.
We caught up with Dubey to find out more about him, his role at Monta and where he sees charging and emobility heading in the future.
EDs: Can you tell us a little about your history and how you ended up in the world of emobility?
My educational background is in electrical and electronics engineering but I also gained a Masters in International Business. I have always worked in commercial roles and have previous work experience in India, China and the United Kingdom.
My last two roles were in the mobility industry, where I was leading sales/commercial teams. I really enjoyed the sector; given the current climate change, and the global warming issue, I felt I was getting actively involved and making a difference sustainably.
The transition into the emobility/EV space came naturally and I soon realised that this is a sector where I can also leverage my engineering background.
EDs: What does your current role at Monta entail?
I am currently working as UK Country Manager for Monta. My main responsibilities include expanding the team in the UK, building brand awareness by attending trade shows/seminars/conferences, meeting clients and forming strategic partnerships. Plus, supporting end users/end clients in making the transition to EV.
EDs: Why did you want to work in the emobility sphere?
I wanted to work in an industry where I can actively make a difference. Working in the EV space helps me to do that. We are constantly advising clients/consumers on why they should switch to EVs or how that will make a difference for the environment and beyond. This really brings pride in what I do.
EDs: How do you see Monta developing over the next five years?
Our aim is to become the default software which powers the EV ecosystem. We want to connect all the stakeholders in the EV space with a tech layer, with Monta at the centre.
With Monta’s software, we want to enable the users/partners to charge the car at home, on the road and at the workplace and then have full control over their energy consumption, charging preference, solar/renewable energy preference or vehicle-to-grid (V2G) preference.
EDs: How do you think the world of electric cars will develop over this time?
I think by 2030, 40-50 per cent of cars sold in the world will be electric. According to a recent OFGEM report, one in four consumers plan to buy electric cars in the next five years: these are early signs of mass adoption.
We are already seeing improved features in electric cars in terms of self driving, smart navigation, safety assistance, voice and gesture control and self parking which will again help drive the mass adoption.
EDs: What role will software play in this and how do you see it developing?
Software will play a key role in making electric cars smarter. We are already seeing the development of features such as plug and charge, V2G, vehicle-to-home (V2H) and wireless charging.
With further development in the software space, we should see improvement in passenger safety, environmental impact, remote diagnostics and maintenance, and more.
EDs: Currently, what are the biggest barriers when it comes to the transition to EVs?
A few of the barriers would be the lack of charging infrastructure, the initial high cost to buy an electric vehicle, long charging times and range anxiety.
EDs: What do you think will be the biggest factors in the mass uptake of electric vehicles?
The initial high cost of owning an electric vehicle is a major obstacle. If we offer no VAT on electric vehicle purchases and interest-free loans on owning an EV, this will drive more drivers to buy.
Charging anxiety is another factor which plays a major role here, so encouraging home users to share their chargers with the public will also significantly improve the charging infrastructure and will help lower charging anxiety.
EDs: How do you see charging developing?
We are already seeing improvements in charging as wireless charging and plug and charge are making their way. The future EV charging experience will be seamless.
For example, you will be able to pay using your Apple watch without leaving your car and charging will be automatically billed to your account for the usage. We are also seeing advancement in ultra-rapid chargers. Amongst these chargers, the ABB Terra 360, can fully charge the electric car in less than 15 minutes, if the car is capable of charging at this speed.
EDs: Will we see the same model as the petrol station or will charging be distributed more at places where we leave cars?
I think it will be both. Most EV drivers will charge their car at home if they have a driveway or off-street parking to charge the car. We are already seeing charging hubs similar to petrol stations along with chargers being installed at car parks, gyms/golf courses.
Having chargers at multiple locations, including car parks, the workplace, at home and fast food locations/coffee shops, it offers multiple options to EV drivers to choose what’s most suitable.
EDs: How will charge times change in the coming years?
It’s already changing and I know there is a lot of innovation and development happening in this area. The ABB Terra 360 charger can charge your car in less than 15 mins.
The startup, Adden Energy, claims it has developed a new battery which can be fully charged in a matter of minutes and last up to 20 years. I expect we’ll see more developments in the next five years.
EDs: Is the current charging speed more of a car issue than an infrastructure issue?
It’s both. If a car battery is not able to accept ultra-fast charging speed then infrastructure can’t support it and if your car can accept the ultra-fast speed but the infrastructure is not there then it’s the same issue.
Development and advancement in this area are already underway because we are already seeing ultra-fast rapid chargers as well as improvement in battery charging.
EDs: What does the future of transport look like to you?
The future of transport looks bright. We are already talking about autonomous vehicles and AI concepts bundled together, driverless public transport, electricity-fuelled planes, super-sonic speed trains and other transport. I am excited to see how it will all develop.
EDs: What EV do you drive and why?
I live in London where the public transport connections are great. I rely on public transport to cut my carbon emissions/footprint further and opt for electric cars from Uber/Bolt if I need to get around the city. I am contemplating getting an electric car soon and have shortlisted it to Tesla, Mercedes, Jaguar or Porsche.
EDs: Where do you see yourself in five years?
In five years, I see myself continuing to work with Monta, leading a bigger team and multiple regions. I plan to stay in the sustainability space and want to play an active part in supporting the UK and beyond in achieving their net zero goals.