Transport and Logistic Services of Saudi Arabia delegation visit to Finland – Recap

On a sunny day in Helsinki, the Finnish Intelligent Transportation Association had the privilege of hosting a distinguished delegation from Saudi Arabia, led by His Excellency Eng. Saleh Aljasser, Minister of Transport for the Ministry of Transport and Logistic Services. The event took place at the historic Katajanokka Hotel chapel and featured a series of insightful presentations by leading experts in electrification, transportation, and sustainable mobility.

Welcome Address by Marko Forsblom, CEO, ITS Finland

Marko Forsblom kicked off the event with a warm welcome, setting a collaborative tone and emphasizing the importance of international cooperation in advancing transportation technologies.

Greetings from Saudi Arabia by H.E. Eng. Saleh Aljasser

His Excellency Eng. Saleh Aljasser conveyed greetings from Saudi Arabia and highlighted the Kingdom’s ongoing efforts and initiatives to transform its transportation infrastructure, aiming for greater sustainability and efficiency.

Elias Pöyry, Co-Founder and CBDO of Virta Global
Digital EV charging platform as a prerequisite for sustainable mobility

Elias Pöyry presented Virta Global’s innovative digital EV charging platform, underscoring its crucial role in achieving sustainable mobility. His insights into how digital solutions can drive the adoption of electric vehicles were particularly enlightening.
See the presentation:

Digital EV charging platform as a prerequisite for sustainable mobility


Tommi Liuska, CSO, Kempower Oyj
The world’s most desired EV fast charging solutions for everyone, everywhere

Tommi Liuska showcased Kempower Oyj’s advanced EV fast charging solutions, which aim to make EV charging accessible to everyone, everywhere. The presentation highlighted the technological advancements and user-friendly designs that make these solutions highly desirable.

Mikko Ampuja, Founder, Vapaus
Transforming urban mobility for good with cycling

Mikko Ampuja introduced Vapaus’s vision for transforming urban mobility through cycling. His presentation focused on the benefits of integrating cycling into urban transport systems to promote sustainability and improve quality of life.
See the presentation:
Transforming urban mobility for good with cycling


Ian Sacs, P.E. Market manager, Smart Mobility, Ramboll
Developing smart and sustainable cities

Ian Sacs discussed the development of smart and sustainable cities, providing a comprehensive overview of how intelligent mobility solutions can enhance urban living and reduce environmental impacts.
See the presentation:
Developing smart and sustainable cities

Janne Lautanala, Chief Ecosystem and Technology Officer, Fintraffic Driving sustainability with traffic data and service ecosystems


Janne Lautanala elaborated on how Fintraffic Ltd leverages traffic data and service ecosystems to drive sustainability in transportation. His talk highlighted the importance of data-driven approaches in managing and optimizing traffic flow.
See the presentation:

Driving sustainability with traffic data and service ecosystems

Johanna Kuismin, Head of operational development, Fintraffic Ltd
Digirail -Digitalizing Finnish railways

DigiRail logo

Johanna Kuismin presented the Digirail project, which focuses on the digitalization of Finnish railways. She explained how digital technologies are being used to improve efficiency, safety, and passenger experience in the rail sector.
See the presentation:
Digirail -Digitalizing Finnish railways

Christoph Krause, Development and Sales Manager, Skoda Transtech
Smart Trams for smartest cities

Christoph Krause concluded the presentations by introducing Skoda Transtech Ltd’s smart trams, designed for the smartest cities. His vision of integrating advanced technologies into tram systems was well received.
See the presentation:
Smart Trams for smartest cities

Read the whole recap from ITS Finland webpage

Electrifying the Grid: How VIRTA Transforms Electric Cars into Virtual Power Plants

Virta, a frontrunner in electric vehicle charging platforms, collaborates with Business Finland, benefitting from innovation funding and loans for its R&D efforts. Now entering a phase of swift international growth, Virta’s latest endeavor aims to integrate EV batteries into the power grid, addressing the surging need for energy flexibility.

Virta’s Grid Innovation: Revolutionizing Energy Balance with EV Charging Networks


Virta is redefining the electricity market’s approach to maintaining balance between production and demand, especially in the face of challenges introduced by the proliferation of variable renewable energy sources like solar and wind power. Traditionally, imbalances were addressed by ramping up or down the output of hydroelectric and thermal power plants, a solution that, while effective, is increasingly seen as cumbersome and less sustainable. Virta’s innovative solution harnesses the power of electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, connecting them into a unified demand response reserve. This network is capable of reacting in real-time to disturbances in the grid, ensuring stability and continuity without the need for additional, heavy-duty power plants. By leveraging this technology, Virta supports a more responsive and resilient energy system, tailored to the complexities of modern electricity markets.

Pioneering Sustainable Mobility: Virta’s Bidirectional Charging and Global Vision

Beyond merely offering a sophisticated charging platform, Virta is pioneering the integration of bidirectional charging technology to further bridge the gap between sustainable mobility and energy systems. This approach allows the battery capacity of EVs to be aggregated and utilized as a flexible energy resource, capable of feeding power back into the grid during times of need. Such innovation not only circumvents the slow and capital-intensive process of bringing new power plants online but also aligns with Virta’s mission since its inception in 2013: to expedite the transition to sustainable mobility and energy systems. With ambitions to lead the service platform market in Europe and Southeast Asia, Virta is not just addressing today’s energy challenges but is laying the groundwork for a future where electric transport and energy sustainability are deeply interconnected, driving both profitability and ecological preservation.


  • Founded in Helsinki in 2013
  • One of the world’s leading digital EV charging platforms that enables charging point owners, such as large charging networks and retail chains, to manage their charger networks and turn the provision of EV charging services into a business
  • Employs more than 230 people (January 2024)
  • Holds the largest number of software patents related to the integration of EV charging and the energy system in the industry globally.
  • Estimated turnover in 2023 close to EUR 80 million
  • Average annual growth in turnover (CAGR) 119% between 2014 and 2022
  • More than 1,000 B2B customers with more than 100,000 charging points in 36 countries (January 2024)
  • The service allows you to charge your electric car at over 500,000 charging points in more than 60 countries (January/2024)
  • Key markets and personnel: Finland (headquarters), Nordic countries, DACH (Germany, Austria, and Switzerland), France, UK and Ireland, South-East Asia (Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, and Australia), Romania (2nd technology unit)

Read the original article about Virta oy on the Business Finland website here

Image is from the same article

Virta closes €85M growth funding to increase EVs’ charging platforms impact on accelerate growth in Europe and Asia-Pacific

Finland-based Virta Ltd, a global leader in the fast-growing Electric Vehicle charging platforms industry(1), has secured new €85M growth funding. The funding round has been among the biggest in the sector in recent years.

The sum consists of €65M equity investment from Virta’s existing investors, led by the private equity firm Jolt Capital, and co-invested by Future Energy Ventures backed by E.ON., Helen Ventures, Vertex Growth Fund, Finnish Industry Investment, Lahti Energy, Vantaa Energy, and Kotka Energy. Twenty million euros will be received from Business Finland, which offers innovation funding for companies and research organizations.

Over 1 000 professional EV charging businesses in 35 countries run their EV charging services on the Virta platform. Together, these charging network operators constitute one of the biggest public networks in Europe. Including roaming, the network enables EV drivers with access to over 350 000 charging points.

Virta and EV charging industry are heading to the era of green hypergrowth

Virta’s growth has continuously surpassed the industry average, and in 2022, Virta Group’s annual revenue grew 112% to €39M (preliminary figures). As a result, Virta was ranked on the Financial Times 1000 Europe’s Fastest Growing Companies list for the fourth time in a row in 2023. With the fresh funding, Virta aims to grow its charging transactions by more than fivefold in Europe and the Asia-Pacific region by 2025.
(1) Estimated number of charging points in Europe in 2025 compared to 2021 +475% from 0,4 million to 2,3 million and 7,9 million in 2030. Sources: ACEA, ICCT, IEA, BNEF, DNV 2030 estimates.

Read full news story on site

The picture is from the Virta website news on the subject