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Published on: March 23, 2022, 11:15 a.m.
Ola Electric invests in Israeli startup
  • Ola is increasing its investments in core cell and battery technologies

By Business India Editorial

Ola Electric has made a strategic undisclosed investment in StoreDot, an Israeli battery technology company that develops ‘extreme-fast charging’ batteries for electric vehicles (EV), the Bengaluru-based firm has said.

As part of the investment, Ola Electric will have access to the company’s extreme-fast charging (XFC) battery technology that claims to charge a battery from 0 to 100 per cent in about five minutes.

“Our ambition is to build a complete ecosystem for EVs here in India. The future of EVs lies in better, faster and high energy density batteries, capable of rapid charging and delivering higher range,” Ola group CEO Bhavish Aggarwal said.

Ola will also have exclusive rights to manufacture batteries integrating StoreDot’s fast-charge technology in the country.

Ola Electric said the investment was the first of several “planned global strategic investments” as it looks to ramp up its core research and development in advanced cell chemistry and manufacturing as well as other battery technologies and new energy systems.

“We are increasing our investments in core cell and battery technologies and ramping up our in-house capabilities and global talent hiring, as well as partnering with global companies doing cutting edge work in this field,” Aggarwal said.

The company plans to set up a gigafactory for cells in the country to meet the demand generated by its vehicle manufacturing facility Ola Futurefactory.

Batteries account for almost 40-50 per cent of the cost of electric vehicles and EV makers are looking for ways to bring this down. Slow charging is also an issue and as the pool of manufacturers widens, the battery could be one of the differentiators.

Ola Electric is among the 10 firms to have submitted bids under the Rs18,100-crore production linked incentive (PLI) scheme for Advanced Chemistry Cell (ACC) battery storage, the government said on 15 January.

Ola Electric also roped in former LG Chem Power CEO Prabhakar Patil to its board recently. Following the appointment, Aggarwal said the company planned to set up a cutting-edge cell-manufacturing facility with up to 50GWh capacity in India, and Patil’s expertise would help accelerate the process of bringing indigenously designed and manufactured cells to the market.

“Ola Electric’s plans to bring StoreDot’s extreme fast charging battery technology to India and manufacture for its range of EVs will offer Indian consumers vastly superior range and charging speed performance. We are also offering our customers a clear, hype-free technology roadmap that will extend far into the future of delivering 100 miles of range in just a two-minute charge, within a decade,” StoreDot CEO Dr Doron Myersdorf said.

StoreDot counts BP Ventures, Daimler, Samsung Ventures and Vietnamese electric vehicle manufacturer VinFast among its investors. The startup plans mass production of its XFC battery cells by 2024.

The investment, however, comes at a time when Ola Electric continues to struggle with issues pertaining to quality, delivery and after-sale service of its scooters.


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