Ola Electric Set To Launch Electric Autorickshaw Prior To IPO

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Ola Electric aims to introduce an electric autorickshaw, competing with Mahindra Treo, Piaggio Ape e-city, and Bajaj RE in the electric three-wheeler market. The product has been developing for several years as part of its broader strategy to venture into the commercial vehicle industry.

According to sources familiar with the matter, Ola Electric has finalized its plans to launch an electric autorickshaw aimed at direct consumer sales. The vehicle, likely named Raahi, is expected to be unveiled later this month. In the electric three-wheeler market, it will compete with models like Mahindra Treo, Piaggio Ape e-city, and Bajaj RE. The development of this product has been ongoing for a couple of years, aligning with Ola Electric’s broader ambitions to enter the commercial vehicle sector.

As part of its preparations for an initial public offering (IPO), Ola Electric will make several announcements, including details about its gigafactory, in the coming months. The launch of the e-autorickshaw is part of this strategy, with an internal goal to complete it within the next two weeks, although this timeline may change.

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Mahindra, Piaggio, and Bajaj currently price their electric autorickshaws between INR 2.0 lakh and INR 3.5 lakh, depending on the model and additional features. According to the government transport website Vahan, electric three-wheeler sales exceeded 580,000 units last year, a 66% increase from 2022, accounting for over 50% of total three-wheeler sales in 2023.

The Raahi, which means “traveller” in Hindi, is one of several launches Ola Electric has planned leading up to its IPO. The company filed a draft red herring prospectus (DRHP) in December of the previous year and aims to raise to INR 5,500 crore through a fresh issue, in addition to an offer for sale of 95.2 million shares by existing investors.

In anticipation of the IPO, Ola Electric is also focusing on strengthening its position in the electric two-wheeler segment, where it currently leads the market. In February, the company extended the battery warranty for all its scooter variants to eight years. It also announced plans to set up 10,000 fast-charging points by the end of the next quarter, sell portable fast chargers to customers, and increase its service centre network from 400 to 600 by April. Additionally, the company listed a four-wheeled vehicle as an “intangible asset under development” in its draft IPO papers.

According to founder and chief executive Bhavish Aggarwal, Ola Electric is working on opening its gigafactory by the end of this quarter. The gigafactory will manufacture its own battery cells. The company plans to allocate INR 1,226 crore from the projected IPO proceeds for the gigafactory.

As of February, Ola Electric held a 41% market share in the electric scooter segment, selling 33,722 units, based on data from the Vahan website. Competitors TVS Motor, Bajaj Auto, and Ather Energy held market shares of 17.7%, 14.2%, and 11%, respectively.

For the fiscal year ended March 31, 2023, Ola Electric reported revenue from operations of INR 2,631 crore with a net loss of INR 1,472 crore. In the June 30, 2023 quarter, the company posted a net loss of INR 267 crore on operating revenue of INR 1,243 crore, marking its first full year of sales.

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Aryaman Raghuvanshi
Aryaman Raghuvanshi
Aryaman Raghuvanshi is a Journalist at EFY. His passion is to explore the future of mobility, which gets him to cover latest technologies shaping the future of automobiles and EVs. But, at times he writes on broader technologies too. LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/aryaman-raghuvanshi-2431b7153

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