India’s electric vehicle startups charge up with funding as everyone from the government to Mukesh Ambani and Elon Musk have their eyes on the sector

India’s electric vehicle startups charge up with funding as everyone from the government to Mukesh Ambani and Elon Musk have their eyes on the sector
An electric vehicle charging station in MumbaiBCCL
  • As India moves towards the probability of a sustainable future, electric vehicles take the centre stage of most discussions.
  • Here’s a look at Indian EV startups that have raised funding in the last one month, including Ola Electric which is reportedly in talks with marquee investors for its latest funding round.
  • As of 2019-20, India has sold over 3.8 lakh electric vehicles and buyer interest is higher than ever before.
As India moves towards the probability of a sustainable future, electric vehicles take the centre stage of most discussions to cut down pollution and also the dependency on fuel as a natural resource.

And enjoying the attention are India’s EV startups, who have made headlines in the last month as investments pour in.

Here’s a look at the Indian EV startups that have raised funding in the last one month, including Ola Electric which is reportedly in talks with marquee investors for its latest funding round.

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StartupWhat they doLatest funding amountInvestors
Ola Electric (In talks)EV manufacturer$300 million (reportedly)Temasek, SoftBank, Tiger Global among others.
BliveEV retail marketplace$1 millionDNA Entertainment Networks, Mumbai Angels,CreditWise Capital,LetsVenture.
Euler MotorsEV developer$4 millionInventus Capital India, Jetty Ventures,Emergent Ventures,Blume Ventures,Ev2 Ventures.
Battery SmartProvider of battery-swapping station network for multi-category electric vehiclesUndisclosedOrios Venture Partners, Faad Network.
eBikeOnline platform offering electric-two wheeler subscription platform$2 millionStartup Buddy, Real Time MCS, Boudhik Ventures, Fluid Ventures.
Source: Data intelligence firm Tracxn

The interest in these startups come in as India is poised to take the global stage in EV. They join other well-funded Indian startups like Ather Energy, US-based Triton, who have already rolled out their EV two-wheelers and four-wheelers or set up shop in India

Ola Electric, the EV arm of ride-hailing giant Ola, in fact claims to be building the world’s largest two-wheeler manufacturing facility. The company claims that by 2022, its facility in Tamil Nadu will be ready to produce 10 million vehicles annually.

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According to a survey conducted by autotech firm CarDekho and Omnicom Media Group, 66% of customers are willing to buy electric vehicles, out of which 53% said they were strongly inclined to go electric.

EVs sold in India (two-wheelers, three wheelers, four-wheelers)


2017-182018-192019-20
56,000129,600155,400
Source: Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles

Push from the government


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According to reports, the Indian government is planning to offer fresh incentives to EV manufacturers – a possible $8 billion over the next five years.

India’s transport minister Nitin Gadkari, who had said that he himself drives an EV, called for people to embrace the shift to electric. Gadkari also said that 100% lithium ion batteries, an essential component in EVs, will be made in India, while the government also researches on other abundantly available materials like aluminium ion, sodium ion, steel ion and zinc ion for batteries.

During the country’s Union Budget 2019-20, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman pushed for the Indian Electric Vehicles mission. In an attempt to make EVs popular, the finance minister had announced a tax subsidy for people who buy EVs.
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“To make electric vehicles affordable to consumers, our government will provide (an) additional income tax deduction of ₹1.5 lakh on the interest paid on loans taken to purchase electric vehicles. This amounts to a benefit of around ₹2.5 lakh over the loan period to the taxpayers who take loans to purchase electric vehicles,” said Sitharaman.

The government has also launched the National Electric Mobility Mission Plan 2020 and also projects like Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles (FAME) for widespread adoption of EVs.

From Elon Musk to Mukesh Ambani set to enter EV industry in India


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World’s second richest man Elon Musk’s Tesla has already announced its much-awaited India entry. Tesla has already set up an office in India’s Bengaluru and will soon set up a manufacturing unit in the city.

Meanwhile, Asia’s richest man Mukesh Ambani also has his eyes on India’s burgeoning EV sector. His company Reliance Industries recently announced that it would make batteries for EVs. “RIL will further accelerate its new energy and new materials business towards its vision of clean and green energy development,” the company said in a filing with the stock exchanges.

These developments come in as big automotive players like Tata, Hyundai and Maruti have been ramping up their EV production in India.
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