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Southern California-based Gelson's announced last week that it is developing a new store format in tandem with EV charging center company Rove that "represents a first-of-its-kind retail brand partnership for Gelson’s."

According to the company, "ReCharge by Gelson’s will offer a curated selection of quality foods, beverages and convenience items delivered with exceptional service to both on-the-go Rove customers and locals in the neighborhood. Offerings will feature coffee service and delicious hot and cold snack and meal options to fuel up on site or to take and eat like poke bowls and sushi, sandwiches and wraps, salads, charcuterie and cheese plates – alongside a large assortment of single-serve and multi-pack cold beverages. A convenient selection of dairy and frozen items will also be offered along with staples like snack foods, bread, and non-grocery items."

As part of the format, "Rove’s EV charging centers will feature 40+ ultra-fast EV chargers, a 24/7 lounge with restrooms and free Wi-Fi, and an eco-friendly car wash for added convenience in some locations. Every center will also include parking spots for non-chargers."

KC's View:

Very smart, especially in a state where in about a decade, the sale of new gas-powered cars will be banned.  California is betting that whatever its current issues, embracing the EV revolution makes sense.  I think that's a good bet, and it sets the table for companies like Gelson's and Rove to innovate around these changes.

There's a story in the LA Times just today about how Los Angeles planning and zoning regulators are requiring developers to put in more EV charging stations and how, while the developers initially resisted, they're now glad they did - if they didn't have the stations, their properties would be less desirable.

Not every geography and population will get to the same place at the same time, but this does strike me as inevitable - requiring investment and a leap of faith now, but extraordinarily important for being relevant in the not too distant future.