Electric vehicle (EV) charging startup Exponent Energy has secured $5 million in its pre-series A round of funding. The round was led by YourNest VC, with participation from 3one4 Capital, AdvantEdge VC, and automotive component maker Motherson Group.
The company will use the funds raised to begin commercial operations and scale it across multiple cities, starting with Bengaluru from early 2022. The company is also looking to hire people across its product, engineering, and deployment teams.
The Bengaluru-based company plans to collaborate with original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in the cargo vehicle space and deploy a citywide charging network with partners.
Founded in 2020 by former Ather Energy executives Arun Vinayak and Sanjay Byalal, the startup claims that it has built a battery pack and charging station called the E-pack and E-pump, that together can unlock 15-minute rapid charging for EVs. The battery pack utilizes regular lithium-ion cells while still maintaining a cycle count of 3,000. According to the company, this is made possible by their proprietary battery management system and charging algorithms, layered on top of their unique E-pack design.
“Motherson coming on board adds immense value to scale with respect to OEM relationships and manufacturing partnerships. Given the demand witnessed for our rapid charging technology in the logistics space, we prioritized closing the Pre-Series A to enter the market by early 2022,” said Co-founder and CEO Vinayak.
According to a report by Mercom Capital Group, smart charging companies received the highest VC funding in the first nine months of 2021, with $690 million in 12 deals. The companies with the smart charging technology have attracted investments from oil & gas and utility majors, including bp, Gulf Oil International, and Iberdrola.
The lack of adequate EV charging infrastructure in public places is a significant hindrance to the growth of EVs in India. As of March 2021, the country had only 1,800 charging stations. Independent studies have projected the demand for public EV charging stations at 2.9 million by 2030.
Recognizing the need for EV charging infrastructure, Convergence Energy Services Limited (CESL), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Energy Efficiency Services Limited, issued an expression of interest to empanel EV charging point operators across India. CESL has also invited e-bids to empanel independent third-party validation and verification agency for its EV charging infrastructure project.
BSES Rajdhani Power, the electricity distribution company in Delhi, has invited proposals to empanel vendors for deploying EV charging infrastructure across various sites in Delhi.
Arjun Joshi is a staff reporter at Mercom India. Before joining Mercom, he worked as a technical writer for enterprise resource software companies based in India and abroad. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Journalism, Psychology, and Optional English from Garden City University, Bangalore. More articles from Arjun Joshi.