The startup has developed full-stack energy solutions for EVs, including a fast-charging battery pack and a freemium SaaS tool to monitor battery health and manage vehicle life cycles
As of now, the pre-revenue stage startup is in talks with five B2B clients, which have around 25,000 two-wheeler EVs
The Indian EV battery market stood at $56.4 Bn in 2022 and is set to expand by 19.9% CAGR to $134.6 Bn by 2027
India’s automotive industry has gone through a paradigm shift in the recent past, and the advent of electric vehicles (EVs) is primarily responsible for this revolution.
However, the shift towards an emission-free future would have been a long shot if the Government of India wasn’t committed to providing a boost to this green sector by incentivising the stakeholders – both buyers and sellers.
According to the Ministry of Road Transport data, the number of electric two-wheelers sold in India in 2022 stood at 6,30,584, mirroring a jump of 304% in EV adoption from 1,56,172 EV two-wheelers in 2021.
Despite the rapid transition, the country’s EV users are bogged down in challenges like slow charging time, a lack of charging infrastructure, battery life, and safety and quality concerns, which can be seen as major deterrents to the adoption of EVs in India.
Fortunately, we have minds like Rahul Lamba, Prashant Rathee and Pratik Somani, the founders of The Energy Company, who are developing solutions to make EVs more efficient and have plans to nib the challenge of range anxiety in the bud — before it becomes a fully grown 10-legged Kraken haunting the space.
The trio was part of the founding team at Ather Energy and product managers at mobility startup Micelio.
With enough experience to rule the roost in the two-wheeler EV space, they founded the Energy Company in 2021 and have so far been successful in developing full-stack energy solutions for EVs, including a fast-charging battery pack and a freemium SaaS tool to monitor battery health and manage vehicle life cycles.
The Bengaluru-based startup, which primarily focuses on electric two-wheelers in India, has already secured an undisclosed amount of pre-seed funding from investors such as LetsVenture, Sia Angels, and We Founder Circle, along with other marquee angel investors.
What’s All The Startup’s EV Treasure Trove?
According to a RedSeer report, more than 60% of users of EV two-wheelers face issues such as slow charging times and a lack of charging infrastructure.
To solve the current challenge, the chief product officer and cofounder of The Energy Company, Prashant Rathee, told Inc42 that the startup has developed an EV energy product portfolio, which can be divided into two categories, a fast-charging battery pack and a SaaS product to monitor battery health and manage vehicle life cycle.
Per the cofounder, The Energy Company’s two solutions solve the most common problems two-wheeler EV users face – slow charging time, a lack of charging infrastructure, battery life and safety.
According to Rathee, their battery pack, FlexiPack, is scalable across electric two-wheelers, three-wheelers and buses and helps vehicles run for 50 km on just a 15-minute fast charge and 100 km after a 40-minute charge. He added that it can be charged across all charging infrastructure due to its nature of being charger agnostic.
EV adoption across vehicle aggregators is being mandated by state governments across India. Since India’s public charging infrastructure is still in its nascent stages, a charger-agnostic battery might help make EVs more efficient for B2B use.
Speaking on battery life, the cofounder pointed out that the longest life cycle of a battery in a commercial EV is around 2-2.5 years. “So, it is a cost that is incurred after every two years by the EV user,” the cofounder added.
Rathee claimed that the startup’s FlexiPack solution comes with a minimum life cycle of four years, double the industry standard.
Meanwhile, The Energy company’s SaaS tool, FlexiTwin, takes inputs from the sensors installed on a battery to digitally record the battery performance, degradation and service history, with insights on battery health and ageing.
Further, the startup also buys back batteries that are near the end of their life cycles from users to recycle.
Charged Up For The Future Yet?
As of now, the startup is in talks with five B2B clients, which have around 25,000 two-wheeler EVs. The startup also has letters of intent (LOIs) for around 2,000 electric two-wheelers, which, Rathee said, translates to INR 10 Cr in revenue by March 2024.
When asked whether the startup was also looking at the B2C segment as well, the cofounder said, “We feel that there are enough vehicle manufacturers out there who will eventually integrate our solution.”
Speaking more about the startup’s target market, Rathee said the company is not targeting high-end smart vehicle OEMs, such as vehicles manufactured by Ola Electric and Ather, but the likes of Hero Electric and Okinawa, which are not into making premium EVs.
“What we want to do is enable electric mobility through these manufacturers. We would like to become the Intel or the Bosch of the space,” Rathee said.
The Energy Company competes with the likes of Log9 Materials, which is also manufacturing long-life EV batteries using graphene and other new-age materials, and Exponent Energy, which improves charging speeds and battery life cycle.
According to a research report by MarketsandMarkets, the Indian EV battery market stood at $56.4 Bn in 2022 and is set to expand by 19.9% CAGR to $134.6 Bn by 2027.
Given that 80% of all two-wheelers in India will be electric by 2030, per RedSeer, The Energy Company has a vast sea of opportunities in front of it. However, the startup still has a long way to go in addressing the challenges in India’s EV space. Therefore, it would be interesting to see how The Energy Company contributes to the rapidly growing EV adoption in India.