Exide Industries launches e-rickshaws

Firm eyes ₹120-crore boost to top-line

Storage battery-maker Exide Industries Ltd. (EIL) announced the launch of e-rickshaws in select markets.

While these vehicles would come fitted with conventional lead acid batteries, the company was simultaneously working on a project to run e-rickshaws with lithium-ion batteries through a leasing model.

Addressing the media, Gautam Chatterjee MD and CEO, EIL described the launch as a forward integration move. The vehicle combines the company’s experience in this field with technology to offer an advanced, reliable product.

“Exide is one of the first branded battery-makers to bring a product exclusively for this sector,” the company said in a regulatory filing.

Vehicle assembly

Arun Mittal, director automotive, EIL, said the company had rented space at Dankuni, near here, for assembling the rickshaws which would be fitted with batteries made at EIL’s unit at Haldia.

The batteries account for 40% of the vehicle’s cost at factory gate.

He said EIL was targeting a ₹120-crore boost to its top-line in a full year of operations through this launch. Mr. Mittal indicated the price of the vehicle (called Exide Neo) would be higher than those found in the unorganised market due to safety and comfort features as well as the total package (with chargers) being offered that will give better mileage and less downtime. At present, this market had two other organised players he said. Exide Neo would be an assembly of components imported from China. He, however, declined to share investment details.

Li-ion JV

Mr. Chatterjee said that the company was working on a leasing model for its proposed li-ion battery-fitted vehicle. In June 2018, Exide had announced a joint venture with a Swiss company for making li-ion batteries in Gujarat. “Li-on battery-fitted e-rickshaws are costlier than conventional ones and we are planning to have a leasing model for these vehicles,” he said. The JV is part of Exide’s strategy to stay ready for the e-transport segment.

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Printable version | Apr 6, 2020 12:53:04 PM |

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