The global automotive industry is going through a paradigm shift and is trying to switch to alternative options that require relatively lesser energy. Likewise, India, the fifth largest automotive market in the world, is also investing in the shift towards electric mobility. As per a CEEV report, the EV market in India is estimated to be a $206 billion opportunity by 2030.
Making use of this, India’s one of the most valued startups Ola Electric just announced that it has raised $200 million in a new funding round. This round has come at a time when the company is facing questions regarding the work culture that they follow. The financing came from Tekne Private Ventures, Alpine Opportunity Fund and Edelweiss and it values Ola Electric at $5 billion.
Prior to this, the Indian spin-off from ride-hailing service Ola secured $200 million funding in September 2021, which valued the company at $3 billion. Also, the total investment secured by Ola Electric is over $600 million.
“Ola Electric is creating India’s EV revolution and is driving cutting edge manufacturing from India for the entire world. With Ola S1, the best scooter ever made, we have changed the entire scooter industry and are now looking forward to bringing our innovative products to more two-wheeler categories, including bikes as well as cars,” said Ola cofounder and CEO Bhavish Aggarwal.
Maiden e-scooters from Ola Electric
Last year, Ola Electric announced its maiden electric scooter called Ola S1. Costing nearly $1,350, the electric scooter offers a range of 121 kilometres on a single charge. Despite the fact that Ola launched its e-scooter at the right time, it is facing issues with the shipment of these vehicles. After many delays, only a small fraction of the customer base that pre-ordered these electric e-scooters has received them.
Competition with Bounce
At a time when Ola Electric struggled to ship its offerings to customers, Bounce announced its own e-scooters in the country. Yet another Bengaluru-based startup, Bounce unveiled an electric scooter meeting the promises made by the Ola counterpart.
It launched its first electric scooter called the Bounce Infinity E1 with a swappable battery and unique features including tubular frame, twin shock absorbers, and hydraulic telescopic front suspension for $480.
World’s biggest electric two-wheeler plant
Founded by Bhavish Aggarwal and Ankit Bhati, Ola Electric has already created a buzz in the Indian market. Its electric vehicles offer best-in-class features and are likely to create a niche in the Indian market. Furthermore, Ola is all set to launch a Future Factory in Tamil Nadu.
Being the world’s largest electric scooter factory, it appears to have ten production lines. The 500-acre factory of Ola Electric is touted to roll out a scooter every two seconds, thereby taking an annual output to 10 million units of electric scooters.
Questionable work culture
While things seem to work out well for Ola Electric, it seems to have a questionable work culture. Ola Electric has seen many key executives quit in recent months citing the toxic work culture and distrustful management.
It is touted that the co-founder Aggarwal pushes unrealistic deadlines on social media and giving the world the impression that things are nearing completion while it is the contrary in reality.