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Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Volta Charging, which provides free electric vehicle charging stations supported by advertising, said Tuesday that the investment firm Energy Impact Partners is providing a $44 million loan to support expansion of the network.

Why it matters: Expansion of charging is one of the keys to expanding EV market penetration. More charging availability helps give consumers confidence in the technology, which now accounts for just a tiny slice of U.S. vehicle sales.

Background: San Francisco-based Volta was founded in 2010 and says it's now the nation's largest free charging network, with over 700 stations in 10 states. Retail partners include Whole Foods and Macy's.

What they're saying: “Volta creates opportunities for brands to connect with their audience, while reducing ‘range anxiety’ and fitting an unmet need for EV drivers—free of charge," Energy Impact Partners managing partner Harry Giovani said in a statement.

Separately, another business note on emerging tech comes via Greentech Media, which writes...

"Tendril and Simple Energy, two Colorado-based startups focused on utility customer data analytics and energy engagement, have merged into a one-stop-shop for utilities’ customer-facing software needs."

Go deeper

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

McConnell drops filibuster demand, paving way for power-sharing deal

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (R) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell attend a joint session of Congress. Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has abandoned his demand that Democrats state, in writing, that they would not abandon the legislative filibuster.

Between the lines: McConnell was never going to agree to a 50-50 power sharing deal without putting up a fight over keeping the 60-vote threshold. But the minority leader ultimately caved after it became clear that delaying the organizing resolution was no longer feasible.

4 hours ago - Technology

Scoop: Google won't donate to members of Congress who voted against election results

Sen. Ted Cruz led the group of Republicans who opposed certifying the results. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Google will not make contributions from its political action committee this cycle to any member of Congress who voted against certifying the results of the presidential election, following the deadly Capitol riot.

Why it matters: Several major businesses paused or pulled political donations following the events of Jan. 6, when pro-Trump rioters, riled up by former President Trump, stormed the Capitol on the day it was to certify the election results.

5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Minority Mitch still setting Senate agenda

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Chuck Schumer may be majority leader, yet in many ways, Mitch McConnell is still running the Senate show — and his counterpart is about done with it.

Why it matters: McConnell rolled over Democrats unapologetically, and kept tight control over his fellow Republicans, while in the majority. But he's showing equal skill as minority leader, using political jiujitsu to convert a perceived weakness into strength.

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