The funds will be used by Ather Energy to expand production capacity, to invest in research and development, charging infrastructure and to expand its sales network
Electric two-wheeler giant Ather Energy has raised $ 128 million in a series of E-Series funding led by the National Investment and Infrastructure Fund’s (NIIF) Strategic Opportunities Fund (SOF) and Hero MotoCorp.
Hero MotoCorp is a significant shareholder in Ather and is reinvesting and continues to hold its 35 percent stake since the new merger, with the exception of other investors.
The funds will be used by Ather Energy to expand production capacity, to invest in research and development, charging infrastructure and to expand its sales network.
Tarun Mehta, CEO of Ather Energy, said: “The company is expected to increase its capacity from 10,000 per month to 35,000 per month by this year and we are already building a new plant. We need to reach a capacity of 1 million only sometime next year. “
Mehta says the company already generates more than 100 rupees a month and hopes to double the number in fiscal 23 years. He estimates that if the chip shortage does not worsen, the industry should be able to reach 100,000 scooters a month by the end of the year from about 40,000 to 50,000 at the moment.
The founder clarifies that the money will be used to build two more platforms for scooters, in addition to the single platform on which he works now. However, it will still not be for building a motorcycle. The money will also help the company maintain its 100 bizarre suppliers who provide it with custom components as they build the scooter from scratch. Mehta says they will support suppliers so they can increase production to 60,000-70,000 a month.
The move comes at a time when the electric scooter industry is showing signs of slowing after a sharp rise in the last three months – to 58% in March compared to February and 15% in February compared to January in terms of registrations.
In April, the registration of electric scooters was slightly negative compared to March. This is primarily due to the continuing and deteriorating shortage of components and important chips after the Russia-Ukraine war, which may last until 2023. And of course the wave of fires of electric two-wheelers forced manufacturers to withdraw more than 6,000 of them, which led to consumer concerns.
Commenting on the NIIF investment, Mehta said: “The transition to electric is inevitable and the 22nd fiscal year was the turning point for the introduction of electric two-wheelers in India. We are very excited to have NIIF log in as an investor. They have recently been at the forefront of the country’s green transition through their investments and initiatives, and we look forward to our association. ”