Globally, we are traversing from fossil fuels to greener fuel options and when it comes to our local mobility, we are seeing a similar transition. Sustainability pledges and the global environmental crisis have been pushing us towards EVs, yet it’ll be gradual in most of the nations. In India the EV sector is in an incipient phase with new startups and existing auto makers disrupting the overall market. India is already facing a huge pollution crisis in many of its major cities with the main source being automobiles. Addressing this concerning issue, the Government is also trying to establish ways to help the population adapt and collectively curb the deteriorating air quality.
Looking at the numbers, the EV industry is expected to reach a massive $206 billion by the year 2030 pertaining to the collective efforts of the government, private players and some emerging startups. For any emerging industry, startups play a vital role in uplifting the industry by bringing in innovations, new technologies and assisting allied businesses in numerous ways. India is also witnessing a rush of startups surfacing across the EV sector, like battery technology, charging solutions, auto manufacturing, software development etc. Here’s a brief overview of some EV startups charging India to become green.
- Ather Energy: 2013 marked the foundation year of this Bangalore based electric 2 wheeler startup established by two IIT Alumni, Tarun Mehta and Swapnil Jain. The startup is focused on the 2 wheeler space of the EV market and is backed by the likes of Hero Motocorp, Innoven Capital along with Flipkart founders. The startup aims to enhance its production capacity to more than 400,000 units per year to cater the rising demand.
- Ultraviolette Automotive: It is a technology startup established in the year 2014 by Narayan Subramaniam & Niraj Rajmohan dealing with electric 2 wheelers and energy infrastructure with an aim to develop an aspirational superbike for Indians. With a whopping $19.8 million already raised, the company is on path of establishing their manufacturing unit in Bangalore with 15,000 units to be built in its first year.
- BluSmart: This Gurugram based startup was founded in 2019 by Mr. Anmol Singh Jaggi and Mr. Punit K Goyal providing on demand smart mobility solutions in the EV charging space. The company is funded by Mayfield Fund, Inflection Point Ventures, LetsVenture, Mumbai Angels. The company is all set to develop affordable and accessible charging platforms across major cities in India.
- Ola Electric: Bhavish Aggarwal founded it in 2017 primarily focused on manufacturing smart electric 2 wheelers with a direct to customer approach. The company is also aiming to enter the 4 wheeler market by next year. What sets Ola electric apart from its competitors is that its models are IoT enabled and have a massive range of 240kms on single charge. The company is growing rapidly in terms of popularity in India especially among the youth and the same can be said about its revenues as it crossed the 500 crore mark this year.
- Cell Propulsion: Founded by 3 former ISRO engineers, Nakul Kukar, Supratim Naskar, and Paras Kaushal, this startup is focused on providing viable solutions to vehicle fleets from light commercial vehicles to trucks and busses weighing upto 20 tons along with integrated data driven softwares for predicting vehicular maintenance and route planning.
- Okinawa: Established in the year 2015, this electric 2 wheeler startup was founded by Jeetender Sharma and Rupali Sharma with an aim to build affordable smart electric vehicles with a decent range of 100kms per charge. Being in the expansion phase, the company is planning to pour in a 500 crore investment to develop a manufacturing plant in Rajasthan.
- Simple Energy: In 2019 this startup was founded by Suhas Rajkumar and Shresth Mishra in Bangalore. The company has the capacity to build an entire vehicle in-house. Specifically in the 2 wheeler segment, the company has launched a single model, The Simple One with two variants, offering a range of 236kms in a single charge and other tech enabled features. The company intends to provide customers with premium features at affordable prices.
- Chargeup: This New Delhi based startup was established in 2019 by Varun Goenka and Ankur Madan as a battery interchanging service for electric 3 wheelers. With an aim to charge a million EVs by 2027, the company is using an AI/ML based platform for demand predictions and automated subscriptions to assist users. The company has already raised $2.5 million in its series A funding and is expected to reach major cities across India.
- Bolt: Mohit Yadav and Jyotiranjan Harichandan came up with this startup with a dream to make it the largest EV tech company in India. Their solutions helps users to find the nearest and most convenient charging point for their EVs. Assisting easy installation of charging stations and providing software enabled navigation and notification systems for users. The company has already established more than 10,000 charging units across multiple cities in India.
- Log9: Incubated in 2015, this material science startup is revolutionising battery technology by developing Lithium Titanium Oxide based cells with features like faster charging, higher capacity, better output and temperature performance. The company also manufactures graphene based fuel cells and nanocaps with improved efficiency and top notch performance disrupting the overall EV and allied markets.
- Altigreen Propulsion Labs: Amitabh Saran, Shalendra Gupta established it in 2013 offering last mile transportation via major commuting automobiles from 2 to 4 wheelers. The company has already spread its roots along multiple countries with headquarters in Bangalore. Backed by Reliance New Energy Limited, Momentum Venture Capital, Xponentia Capital along with Accurant International, the company has raised $40 million in investment.
Apart from these, India’s EV ecosystem is flourishing with more than 400 startups already serving the industry. With the govt. pushing the idea of “Make in India” and such innovations in the sector, it's highly likely that the country’s aim to tackle the pollution crisis and going carbon zero by 2070 is quite achievable.