Schenectady

Firms in Schenectady, Dubai partner on vehicle charging technology

Officials mark the partnership between Livingston Energy of Schenectady and Volt.ae of Dubai.
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Officials mark the partnership between Livingston Energy of Schenectady and Volt.ae of Dubai.

SCHENECTADY — The United Arab Emirates has a new technology partner in the Capital Region: Livingston Energy, a Schenectady-based firm that announced a partnership with Dubai company Volt.ae on Thursday. 

The two companies plan to develop software for monitoring and using electric vehicle charging stations. 

Livingston Energy co-founder Jason Zarillo said the Smart Cities movement drew the company to Schenectady and eventually led them to Dubai.

“That’s why we were really interested to see Dubai and what they’re doing there,” said Zarillo. “They are building things at such a rapid pace that they just build everything for the future instead of for now.”

Abu Dhabi is one of the seven emirates in the Middle Eastern country of the United Arab Emirates. Its investment arm owns semiconductor factory GlobalFoundries in Saratoga County. 

That’s why in October, Zarillo joined GlobalFoundries and other Capital Region leaders on a trade mission to UAE.

“They were looking for more opportunities in upstate New York where the two areas could have more commerce, more partnership, more collaboration, since they’re already so heavily vested in Upstate New York with GlobalFoundries,” he said

Schenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy, a strong promoter of the Smart City concept here, attended the signing of the partnership between the two companies. 

“Schenectady has a long history of innovation in technology and is proud to continue that tradition with Livingston Energy Group. We are thrilled to be using their stations and technology — an exciting addition to our smart city and sustainable initiatives.”  

Volt.ae specializes in installing and maintaining electric vehicle charging stations; Livingston Energy was started in 2016 to help clients save on energy bills, but has since expanded into the charging station market.

“We both share a really similar goal for exactly what we want to provide for the site host that has the charging station, and what we want to provide for the driver,” said Zarillo. “We want to make the experience better for both of them.”

GlobalFoundries was started in 2009 after an initial investment from a UAE holding company. It currently employs around 3,000 people at its Saratoga County computer chip foundry. 

Livingston Energy consists of its two co-founders and a few subcontractors, but Zarillo said they’re hoping to expand and just posted a job opening. 

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