Ather Energy announced a fresh round of funding of INR 180 crores today from Hero MotoCorp – for 26-30% stake. The smart electric two-wheeler startup, received its third round of funding, with previous investments from Tiger Global, Sachin and Binny Bansal – Flipkart’s promoters – in their personal capacity. Ather Energy is building India’s first smart, electric scooter – the S340.
The new round of capital raised will be used to sustain Ather Energy’s momentum in its journey of building a future-ready product platform and to accelerate the country’s ecosystem and infrastructure development around electric vehicles (EV).
The S340 from Ather Energy consists of a Lithium ion battery pack and records a top speed of 72 kmph and a range of 60 km. The rich ownership experience of the product comes through in the on-board navigation, pre-emptive diagnostics, remote configuration and personalised ride profiles through a touchscreen dashboard and mobile app. The experience further extends with a combination of online sales complimented by experience centres. There is also the convenience of door-step delivery and servicing and a mobile app allowing remote access and configuration.
In the meeting held on October 26, 2016, Hero MotoCorp’s Board of Directors had approved an investment of Rs. 205 crore – From which, Rs. 180 crore is the immediate tranch.
Speaking on the investment, Tarun Mehta, CEO and co-founder of Ather Energy said, “The funding is a strong validation of our product roadmap and technology capability, endorsed by one of the biggest global automotive players. We believe smart connected electric vehicles are the future and India will be an important global player in it.”
Adding, Pawan Munjal, Chairman, Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer, Hero MotoCorp commented “As the market leader and a global automotive major, Hero takes the lead in many areas that benefit the environment, customer and industry. Adoption of environment-friendly fuel is a priority for Hero, as is propagating sustainable manufacturing through green facilities. One of our strategic priorities, therefore, is to engage with the external ecosystem, including start-ups in adjacent areas. Hero MotoCorp intends to enhance its participation in the EV space by pursuing its internal EV program in addition to partnering with Ather. Ather is the best start-up in the two-wheeler EV space and we firmly believe that they are on the way to become one of the leaders in India, potentially even globally. They bring together a vision with high aspiration, ability to progress rapidly and the humility to learn and improve continually. We are excited to be a strategic investor and see this as an important step in building the necessary ecosystem needed to support commercialisation of EVs in the country.”