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Competition in Electric Vehicle business segment set to heat up with NTPC’s entry


With rapidly evolving technologies and business models, there is need to adopt new and unique pathways to provide clean, efficient and cost-effective services. Keeping this in mind, National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC), India’s largest power generator, has entered into new business segment electric vehicle (EV) charging business and set up charging stations in Noida and Delhi.

The power generator company plans to set up many charging stations in the country, it said in a statement. The objective behind setting up EV charging points is to be part of promoting clean energy transportation, it added, which will eventually push demand for electric vehicles as well as power generated by its plants.

Indian government is all set push this initiate as they see cost and clean advantage in shifting to electric. According to a report, India will become an all electric vehicle country by 2030. The move will not merely expected to reduce pollution but cut oil imports. In comparison, a vehicle powered by an internal combustion engine
costs Rs 7 per km to run, whereas electrical vehicle costs Rs 1 per km. At present, 1% of the 200 million vehicles on Indian roads are estimated to be electric vehicles.

Many world vehicle makers plan to introduce electric vehicle in India as they see the country as potential market for battery-operated vehicle and cars.

Last week, Tesla Founder and pioneer of electric vehicle, Elon Musk, hailed the move by India. Musk, meanwhile, delayed the launch of electric cars in India due to lack of component suppliers in the country.

Earlier last year, the Apex Court had banned diesel cars and SUVs with an engine capacity over 2000cc in the Delhi-NCR region. The ruling impacted the sales of Audi, Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Toyota, which had many diesel models, and forced them to market more petrol and electric vehicles.

Ola eyes opportunity

Last month, Ola, a taxi aggregator, had launched a pilot project with more than 50 charging points across four locations in which it invested Rs 50 crore in electric vehicles and charging infrastructure. The vehicles will get charged at these stations. The cabs and rickshaws will need 1.30 hours to get charged and can travel 140 kms, the company said.

Ola will have a fleet of over 300 electric vehicles in Nagpur, which includes two 34-seater buses. Ola is present in 102 Indian cities and has more that 5,00,000 vehicles running on its platform.

Ola has raised $1.9 Billion in 10 rounds from investors such as Softbank, Tiger Global, DST Global and others. In May 2017, Ola raised $104 Mn from RNT Capital and other existing investors. SoftBank currently holds over 40% stake in the company after the last financing around.

The government has reportedly inked a deal with SoftBank for a low-interest funding of around 2 Lakh electric buses to be deployed in public transport. SoftBank through Ola, would be looking to cash in the opportunity before Tesla make entry in India.

Vehicle of Future

The vehicle of the future is going to be electric-driven. And if you have any doubt, you may listen to what biggest vehicle and car makers in the world like Toyota and General Motors have to say about clean technology. Virtually anyone who has any stake in automobile industry. More so, Electric vehicles are cheaper than the ones run on conventional fuels, such as petrol and diesel.

With the entry of big firms, electric vehicles will certainly help in reducing the amount of pollution and CO2 that is emitted by vehicles to a great extent, and would prove instrumental in conserving the environment.

National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC), India's largest power generator, has entered into new business segment electric vehicle (EV) charging business and set up charging stations in Noida and Delhi

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