Innovation into the Future with Better Place
from left: Better Place CEO, Johnny Hansen; U.S. Ambassador Fulton; Stephen Brugger, AmCham
Ambassador Fulton gets a full tour of the car
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On June 6, AmCham Patron member Better Place Denmark hosted a Business After Hours event on the topic of innovation. Participants gathered at Better Place’s stylish test drive facility in Hellerup to hear remarks from the U.S. Ambassador Laurie S. Fulton and Better Place CEO, Johnny Hansen.
Ambassador Fulton remembered meeting with company founder and visionary, Shai Agassi, when she first came to Denmark, and how she has followed the growth of the company ever since. She underscored the importance of public private partnerships, citing Better Place’s relationship with DONG Energy as being especially important in laying the foundation for independence from fossil fuels.
“You (Better Place) epitomize the spirit of Green Partnerships,” referring to Secretary Clinton’s visit to Copenhagen last week to launch Green Partnerships for Growth. The Ambassador discussed the notion that this effort is about more than just doing what is good for the environment - though that is important. It is also about creating economic growth and sustainable, highly skilled jobs that will help secure the future prosperity of both Denmark and the U.S.
Sustainable transportation for the mass market is inevitable, it is not ‘if’ but ‘when’. Johnny Hansen told the story of Better Place, and shared the concept with a curious audience. Hansen pointed out that Better Place is not a car company, but a software company, connecting people to the smart grid through advanced IT technologies.
They are also a sustainable energy storage system, as these Electric vehicles (EV’s) store electricity from the smart grid. EV’s present an opportunity for energy independence, and also new sources of economic growth in energy, IT and infrastructure building, ultimately resulting in a lot of jobs.
Following the presentations, participants enjoyed a networking reception and the possibility to tour the Better Place showroom, and test drive the Renault EV’s.