The year 2021 will begin on a high for Ola as it’s all set to introduce its OLA first electric scooter.
To provide some background, Ola is well-known in the ride-hailing business. December 2010 saw the inception of Ola by 2 IIT graduates, Bhavesh Agarwal and Ankit Bharati in Bangalore. ANI Technologies Pvt. Ltd further developed this. The website goes by ‘olacabs.com’. The aim then was to build easy transportation services for a billion people. Many people look up to Ola today as one of those breakout start-ups of the century. Its success story has inspired millions of young, budding entrepreneurs.
Playstore even ranks Ola to be a #Number1 ride hailing app.
Today Ola boasts of a good 7000+ employees who work round the clock to provide its users with some quality service. The Ola app provides its user with some convenient mobility services by facilitating a connection between their drivers and customers with a varied choice granted with respect to the means of transport be it bikes, auto-rickshaws, metered taxis and cabs and this move was popularly availed by its consumers, thus creating a huge online presence. It truly has simplified the once painful process of booking a cab. Ola now also provides the user with the choice to opt got self-drive cars. Back in 2017, Ola even initiated a bicycle sharing service which went by the name ‘Ola Pedal’.
This was said to facilitate the last-mile connectivity issue. Ola is futuristic by its approach, searching for ways to expand and build easy mobility means for the next set of the generation. Its goal to be consumer-friendly led to it offering micro-insurance, credit led payment option and even the extent of offering a range of its food brands they own like Food Panda. Talk about a continually expanding business.
In May 2020, Ola announced its acquisition of an Amsterdam-based startup called Etergo, which manufactures scooters as their venture into the two-wheelers market. The amount it took to seal this deal is still to be disclosed to the public domain. The firm initially envisioned to launch its electric scooter around January 2021 as this recent acquisition has quickened the pace of its implementation by boosting its engineering and designing potential.
The much-anticipated electric scooter will be sold in India as well as Europe as per the market buzz. The Dutch firm (Etergo) is quite popular for its novel scooter that utilized an adjustable, high energy battery that promises to deliver a range of up to an apparent 149 miles. Features such as its form, design and competence have earned it the title of the “Tesla of the Scooter World”.
Conception and Reception of the Idea
This seems to be beneficial to Ola since its Indian customers have always expressed their preference for two-wheelers as it feels easier on their pockets. Now that Ola has acknowledged two-wheelers as the modern mobility platform as its future, it chose to function accordingly. The company reported quite positively regarding the entire event, saying that they aimed to be functional in at least 150 plus Indian cities, and hoped to expand as time goes by.
The market buzz also presents an optimistic report- the company seems to be awaiting a million e-scooters in the very first year of sales. The idea of offering the service of an e-scooter is giving Ola some bonus points, an advantage above its competitors. Maybe that’s the way Ola does it, come right into the competition with a bang.
But there also seems to be a fair amount of opposition faced. Etergo was a major crowd-funding act too, and it supposedly raises a good million euros. But after all the money that it soaked in from various investors, it was sold off to Ola.
This did not bode well for many investors. Some of them even initiated the process of filing a lawsuit in a European Court to gain reparations from Etergo and its current owner, Ola. There isn’t much news around regarding this issue.
Competition and Pricing of the Ola First Electric Scooter
Etergo is not the first leading company to have worked with/under Ola. Before this, Ola has enjoyed some refining experiences with some top-of-the-game automobile companies such as Jaguar, Ferrari and BMW to name a few.
Ola shall be touted to enter the two-wheeler market as the competition to long-time market players like Bajaj Auto or Hero Electric to name a few. We can now fairly assume that the new Ola Electric Scooter will be priced to combat and overcome its fossil-fueled peers. The predictions come around to a good 90,000 rupees for its novel lineup.
The next step that followed is the talks to open its scooter manufacturing facilities right here in India. The facility if it is to get established, will live up to its hype and would most likely conduct an annual production process of 2 million units.
In the present scenario, there has been no official communication regarding the electric scooter since its PTI Report. It is believed that Ola aims to manufacture two-wheelers in India and it reportedly in talks with four state governments too.
Further Details On The Ola First Electric Scooter
The earliest batch of scooters is reported to come from the production house in the Netherlands. Soon after they hope that the Indian facility is established and equipped to carry on further operations in a bid to abide by the Government’s AtmaNirbhar Bharat Vision.
Ola also planned to hire around 2,00 people in the very next electric vehicle plan which will result in this addition becoming the largest vertical in the company. The restructuring is a favourable move, placing it back in the trust of its users. Ola dreams that such ventures and time to time institutional reshaping will make it the world’s top engineering organization. The idea is to take in around 2.00 people which will facilitate job opportunities in the senior positions in say manufacturing, development of product avenue and design + marketing business.
Although the main plan is the e-scooter, there also came up a plan to add on more two-wheeler categories such as mopeds or motorcycles. Soon to add on more three-wheeler and four-wheeler categories as well, Ola will be quite prosperous with all these developments. Ola also mentioned its interest in helping the public sector attain some carbon neutrality by rolling out more electric vehicles.
Now we wonder how it would execute its plans with the pandemic’s hold strengthening around the world. Back during the early stages of the onset of the dreaded virus, Ola had reportedly announced its intention to cut out 35% of its workforce as it struggled to come to terms with the sudden drop in its business as a result of the lockdown implementation.
This soon changed as the company decided to up its game and devise an adaptable strategy to deal with the pandemic’s blows. It focused completely on the acquisition and made a good deal, thus converting crisis into opportunity.