EV charging at a 7_Eleven 7Charge station
7-Eleven officially launched its EV charging network, 7Charge, in March, with stations open in four U.S. states and expansion plans that include Canada. Photo: 7-Eleven

First announced in 2021, the convenience chain’s 7Charge fast-charging network is now officially online in four U.S. states; Canadian sites are planned, with B.C. a likely beachhead

Convenience store giant 7-Eleven last week unveiled its long-awaited EV fast-charging network, officially dubbed 7Charge, stating that when complete it will be “one of the largest and most compatible fast-charging networks of any retailer in North America.”

That planned expansion includes sites in Canada, but 7-Eleven’s announcement offered no other details other than to say it is “coming soon” to this country.

Electric Autonomy reached out to the company for further details on its Canadian plans but did not receive any reply prior to publication.

But there are some clues.

7-Eleven originally announced its intention to deploy a fast-charging network with stations at 250 stores, including some in Canada, in June 2021.

Later that year, Electric Autonomy reported that the company had been awarded $300,000 through Natural Resources Canada’s Electric Vehicle and Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Deployment Initiative (EVAFIDI) to support the installation of 12 charging ports at six locations in B.C.

In February of this year, in a bundle of EV-related investments in B.C., NRCan announced a further “contribution” of $98,000 to 7-Eleven through the same EVAFIDI program. Assuming the same dollars per site allocation as with the original funding, that would be enough money to support another four 7-Eleven EV charging ports at two locations.

Third-party network integration

According to 7-Eleven’s latest release, the 7Charge network will feature CCS and Chademo plug types. The release also hints that the network will offer integration with other third-party charging providers.

“By expanding the 7Charge network, while continuing to utilize third-party fast-charging network options, 7-Eleven will have the ability to grow its network to match consumer demand and make EV charging available to neighborhoods that have, until now, lacked access,” the released stated.

Payment can be made via the 7Charge app or with a credit card. 7-Eleven says all of its chargers are “backed by 100 per cent green electricity.”

“For over 95 years, 7-Eleven has innovated to meet our customers’ needs,” said Joe DePinto, president and CEO at 7-Eleven, in the press release. “Now, we are innovating once again to meet our customers’ where they are by expanding our business to provide EV drivers convenience of the future…today.”