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Noida-based maker of electric motorcycles, One Electric has already proven its worth in eight international markets. The company is currently looking for capital to finance its overseas expansion plans. This includes a Nairobi, Kenya assembly plant.
According to Gaurav Uppal (CEO), the company plans to raise $5 million as part of its preseries round of financing. The Series A round will be for $20 million towards the end this fiscal year. He said that it is already in discussions with multiple investors.
Two plants will be built in Nairobi and Pune with the funds. Uppal stated that a portion of the funds will be used to develop products and establish a supply chain for large-scale production.
So far, the company has conducted market testing in five African countries, Nepal, Dubai, and the USA. According to the chief executive, Africa has proven to be the most promising market, as the company’s Kridn motorcycle can withstand the harsh terrain.
“That’s why we are beating the Chinese. People are now convinced that our motorcycles are worth the 30% premium,” he said.
One Electric has sold approximately 1,600 motorcycles to date, with the majority in Africa followed by India. A few units were also sold in other countries for trial. After its product was approved by clients, One Electric now plans to increase production at scale and raise funds.
One Electric’s CEO, Gaurav Uppal stated that it is already profitable unlike most electric vehicle players. After the company has launched operations in eight countries of its markets, it plans to begin product testing in Europe before the end of the fiscal.
Uppal said, “Once we meet the technical requirements in Europe, we can easily scale to Latin America and Southeast Asia. We don’t want to be dependent on one geography as EVs are an evolving area vulnerable to policy changes.”
One Electric is focusing on the B2B market while most EV manufacturers are concentrating on the consumer market. According to its chief executive, e-commerce companies have expressed interest in purchasing its motorcycles in India and abroad.
FAME scheme, the Union Government’s flagship EV promotion program, had not yet been applied for subsidies by Uppal. Uppal stated that the reason it was unable to find a reliable Indian supplier for motor and controller – components that are required to be sourced locally in order to receive subsidies. The company has now found local suppliers of all key components and is optimistic about being approved under the FAME scheme in the next fiscal year.