Ola Electric to invest USD 100 mn in gigafactory – ET Auto

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Ola Electric to invest USD 100 mn in gigafactory – ET Auto


Last August, Ola Electric raised USD 240 million from State Bank of India for building the Gigafactory as part of a USD 384 million financing round that saw participation from Singapore’s sovereign fund Temasek.

IPO-bound Ola Electric plans to invest USD 100 million (about INR 834 crore) in the first phase of building its gigafactory for producing lithium-ion battery cells, founder Bhavish Aggarwal said on Saturday. He added that Ola’s electric scooters will feature the locally-produced battery cells as early as next year.

The investment will be used for ‘phase 1A’ of the Gigafactory for setting up 1.5 GWh (gigawatt hour) of cell manufacturing capacity. Aggarwal said the aim is to expand capacity to 5 GWh in ‘phase 1B’. Ola Electric recently received certification from the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) for the battery cells, he said.

“Early next year, you can expect to see our own cells in our own products… we have some work to do around finalising the production process and commercialisation, but we are on our way,” he added.

Ola Electric is developing a 4680 form of battery cells, which is more energy-dense and advanced than the 2170 form of battery cells it currently sources for its electric scooters, according to Aggarwal.

He said the company will likely supply cells to third party firms like other electric two-wheeler makers and renewable energy firms from the new factory. The firm is also working on solid-state batteries, he added.

“About 35-40% of the two-wheeler EV cost goes into the battery… there is a fair amount of margin benefit that we will get as we start using our own cells,” Aggarwal said.

Last August, Ola Electric raised USD 240 million from State Bank of India for building the Gigafactory as part of a USD 384 million financing round that saw participation from Singapore’s sovereign fund Temasek.

In its draft prospectus with Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi), Ola said it intends to use INR 1,226 crore (USD 147 million) worth of proceeds from its initial public offering to expand the Gigafactory’s capacity from 5 GWh to 6.4 GWh through FY25 and FY26.

The firm will replicate its policy of using only female workers on the manufacturing floor at its scooter assembly factory, called the Future Factory, at its new battery cell factory too. “We have had a great experience with the all-women team and that policy will continue… We don’t have any policies like Foxconn and I don’t want to comment on other company policies,” Aggarwal said.

Reuters reported on June 25 that Foxconn was rejecting married women from working at its Tamil Nadu factory, where it assembles Iphones.

On the opening of a new factory in neighbouring Maharashtra by rival Ather Energy, which drew protests from Karnataka lawmakers, he said Karnataka also has ample supply chain firms to support new factories. “We only went with Tamil Nadu at the time of setting up our factories because we got a better deal from them at that time,” he added.

Agarwal said Ola Electric will likely list this calendar year, without giving further details. On June 20, ET reported that Ola Electric had secured Sebi approval for the IPO. The firm is proposing to raise up to INR 5,500 crore through a fresh issue and an offer-for-sale (OFS) of 95.2 million shares.

  • Published On Jun 30, 2024 at 11:20 AM IST

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