- Southern California grocer Gelson’s has signed a deal to provide food and beverage services at electric vehicle-charging centers under development by startup Rove, according to an announcement issued last week.
- The concept, known as ReCharge by Gelson's, will make a variety of foods, drinks and convenience items available to people who are powering up their vehicles and customers who stop by just to make a purchase. Rove aims to launch its network of EV-charging centers with six Southern California facilities starting this year and plans to have 20 of the facilities in operation by 2026, according to a press release.
- Gelson’s is following other grocers and c-store operators in connecting its name with the electric vehicle trend.
The move by Gelson’s to join forces with Rove will allow the upscale retailer to reach consumers who might not otherwise come into contact with the company’s brand and offerings.
Gelson’s said it plans to sell items like dairy and frozen items, bread and certain non-grocery items at the Rove centers. The retailer will also offer poke bowls, sushi, sandwiches, salads, cheese plates and cold beverages at the facilities.
In addition to a Gelson’s outpost, the centers will offer customers amenities such as a lounge, restrooms, wireless internet service. Some of the facilities are also slated to include an “eco-friendly” car wash. Each center will feature around 40 direct-current fast chargers along with parking spots for people who do not need to charge their vehicles.
The decision by Gelson’s to work with Rove, which was founded in 2021, is “a first-of-its-kind retail brand partnership” for the company, which currently runs 27 grocery stores and plans to open another location this month. Gelson’s noted in the announcement that the arrangement reflects a broader effort by the retailer to make its operations more sustainable, adding that it has been transitioning its fleet to electric and alternative fuel vehicles.
Other retailers that have looked to align themselves with the shift toward electric vehicles include Kroger and Giant Food, both of which offer advertising-supported EV-charging stations in front of supermarkets in conjunction with Volta. Walmart, meanwhile, currently offers EV stations at more than 280 facilities and plans to bring the equipment to thousands of Walmart and Sam’s Club locations by 2030.