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Hyderabad startup Gayam may power Ola's electric vehicle fleet
Apr 06, 2017 Shashwati Shankar & Varsha Bansal
Gayam Motor Works, launched in 2010 by brothers Raja Gayam and Rahul Gayam, manufactures electric assistive bicycles and electric autos
BENGALURU | HYDERABAD: Taxi-aggregator Ola is discussing a collaboration with a little-known maker of electric bicycles and auto-rickshaws for its proposed fleet of electric vehicles.
Ola plans to partner with Hyderabad-based Gayam Motor Works for a trial run of electric vehicles in cities including Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru and Hyderabad, according to two people directly aware of the discussions. The pilot project is expected to begin in June or July, they said. The partnership with GMW may not be for electric cars.
GMW, launched in 2010 by brothers Raja Gayam and Rahul Gayam, manufactures electric assistive bicycles and electric autos. It is also working on adding electric four-wheelers to its fleet.
Last year, the company was in the news for striking partnerships with UberEATS and food-delivery startup Swiggy to supply its bicycles for their delivery personnel.
Ola's ambitious effort to launch a fleet of electric vehicles has the blessings of primary investor SoftBank's chief executive Masayoshi Son. He had said in December after a meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi that he wished to “give away a million electric cars, made in India, for free to drivers of Ola cars.“
Since then, Ola has moved swiftly to begin pilot projects in its key markets. In March, the company announced a partnership with the Telangana government for a trial run of electric vehicles.
“We are in talks “We are in talks with Gayam Motor Works, which is assisting us with this project,“ said an Ola executive on condition of anonymity. “Ideally, it's like how you have seen Tesla in the United States. There will be plans to set up battery charging or swapping stations across cities. As of now, we are only looking at the top cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru and Hyderabad.“
Telangana information technology secretary Jayesh Ranjan said Ola's electric vehicles pilot project in Hyderabad will begin with 100 vehicles and include cars, buses and autos.
“It is Ola's responsibility to source the vehicles for this project. They already have a partnership with Mahindra for electric cars. Similarly, they are in talks with GMW for electric autos possibly and some other company for buses,“ said Ranjan.
Automaker Mahindra and Mahindra manufactures electric vehicles under the brands E2O and eVerito.
Ola declined comment for this report. GMW did not immediately reply to ET's emailed queries.
Ola's introduction of electric car vehicles is expected to boost electric vehicle sales in the country as well as help lower atmospheric pollution and India's energy import bills.
“The electric vehicles segment will be a hot space to be in India in the coming years. Besides, the government support for Ola is a huge push for (electric vehicle makers),“ said an analyst.
[© 2017 Bennett, Coleman]
Gayam Motor Works to power Ola’s e-auto
11th Apr 2017 Sruti Venugopal
Gayam Motor Works founders Rahul Gayam (standing) and Raja Gayam with their electric auto
Electric vehicle manufacturer Gayam Motor Works has inked collaboration with the former’s rival, homegrown ride-sharing aggregator Ola.
Hyderabad: Even as Ola plans to get into electric vehicle segment, one Hyderabad-based startup is helping them in this endeavour. After successfully entering into a partnership with Uber, electric vehicle manufacturer Gayam Motor Works has inked collaboration with the former’s rival, homegrown ride-sharing aggregator Ola. As part of the tie up, the electric vehicle startup will be supplying their electric autos to Ola for their last-mile connectivity in metro cities.
The company, that has been working on its electric vehicles like autos, bikes and even four-wheelers, has been in operations since 2014. The T-Hub incubated startup is almost on the verge of finalising the partnership with Ola. “We should be closing the deal in the next three months. As a company, we will be supplying electric three-wheelers or e-autos to the ride-sharing aggregator for their pilot project,” Raja Gayam, co-founder of Gayam Motor Works told Telangana Today.
Once successful, Ola plans to adapt their vehicles for their country-wide initiative, Gayam said without divulging details about the proposed deal size and investment figures as the talks are still on with the company.
GMW has so far supplied about 250 electric autos and 50 bikes and has secured orders from Uber’s food delivery segment, UberEats, in Singapore and Hong Kong, and has partnered with Uber under the UberExchange programme. Under the partnership with Uber, it supplied electric bikes for their food delivery segment.
One of the USPs of the company, according to Gayam is the low cost of the vehicles. While electric bikes sell in the range of Rs 25,000 to Rs 45,000, autos are cheaper by Rs 50,000 than competition.
Previously, Gayam had told Telangana Today that they are looking at raising $10 million in funding after bootstrapping with an investment of Rs 18 crore. “Currently we are still in talks with some investors in the bay area and hopefully we should be finalising something soon,” he said.
The bicycle, or bike as Gayam likes to call it, comes with a battery that detects pressure – when the user puts brake – and gives speed accordingly. It can run for 70 km on one charge. The flagship product, auto, has been in operations for three years and the lithium-ion battery-powered vehicles come with inbuilt recharging points.
The company currently follows the business-to-business model but going ahead it plans to get into the commercial market. For this, it is building its service centres in Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Gurgaon.
[© Telangana Today]
Gayam Raja Hyderabad Area, India - CEO at Gayam Motor Works (GMW)
We design, manufacture, and sell electric vehicles. ... We also sell electric bicycles through our brand LIMITLESS ...
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