goEgo is a complete E-mobility charging solution, that combines engagement, rewards & adoption through a mix of online and offline channels. The Founder and MD, Sayantan Chakroborti, an alumnus of Rotterdam School of Management, was stationed in the Netherlands – Europe’s leading country in electric mobility and trade before moving back to India. Sayantan had been a part of global banks and financial services companies where he worked on large ESG mandates and Impact investment portfolios. Get to know more about goEgo here, from EVStory’s Aditi Kelkar in conversation with Mr. Sayantan Chakraborti.
Mr. Chakraborti, please tell our readers about goEgoNetwork as an EV charging player in India.
From providing the right charger to building a robust network of chargers, we aim towards keeping your EV charged up while you shop, eat, work, or relax. With our convenient charging options, we are celebrating a greener world and of course you are advocating it by owning an EV.
What led to the founding of the company goEgoNetwork was a eureka moment in 2019. In our quest to cease the carbon emissions by Internal Combustion Engine Vehicles with sustainable, greener electric vehicles, we aimed at accelerating the adoption of electric mobility in India. To bridge the gap between Electric vehicles’ demand and scarcely available charging infrastructure supply in India, we pledged to reach the remotest places of India with our revolutionary, tested, and reliable domestically developed EV chargers and stations.
With vested trust in our tested, OCPP and ARAI-certified chargers, our presence, which was only in 5 cities of India in 2020, is today spread in more than 55 cities in 15 states of the country. Over 1300+ of our charging stations in the range of 1.1kW AC and 60kW DC are in action currently at various locations in India and are easily accessible by our customers through our app – goME.
2022 is the year of growth and innovation for us at goEgoNetwork. From the start of the year, we have been tying up with various institutions including educational institutes, housing societies, malls, and car parking spaces. Having planned many such strategic partnerships and high-impact projects to be unveiled in the coming years, we strive to reach millions of Indians through a seamless, intelligent, and reliable EV charging network.
What type of charging stations do you offer? And what other solutions do you provide for the charging ecosystem?
We offer Charging stations for 2-Wheeler, 3-Wheeler, 4-wheeler, and for E-buses. Our range of products currently comprises 12 EV charging stations for commercial and personal use ranging from 3.3 kW (3 Socket) to 10 kW (3 Socket) for e2W, e3W & for e4W ranges from 7.4 kW to 22 kW with single gun and double gun options. We also have localized DC fast charging stations with 30kW, 60 kW and 120KW CCS2 and GB/T with single gun and double guns option.
We provide charging stations for Public, Restricted and Captive usage for different ecosystems such as public parking, residential and office spaces. We offer opex, capex and white labelled products in our offering depends on business requirements.
What barriers did you face while entering the EV market as a startup? Any suggestions for ARAI or ICAT to help encourage more entrepreneurship in the EV sector?
While entering the EV market as a start-up we observed the following barriers-
(a) The standardization on connectors of DC chargers were missing. As a start-up it is very important to take care of CCS2, GB/T as well as CHAdeMO Gun.
(b) In India, we do not have the right ecosystem to develop these chargers. Most of the aggregates need to be imported especially for the development of DC fast chargers.
(c) Meeting the cost targets will be another challenge because most of the items are imported.
(d) There are not many experienced and skilled people in the EV charger segment at this point of time who can do the R&D activities fast.
(e) Last but not least is the global issues of semiconductors for developing the controllers of these chargers.
Some suggestions for ARAI / iCAT
(a) Bringing down the certification cost to a minimum level of the current certification cost for the Start-up companies.
(b) Educate the R&D team of Start-up companies about critical technical aspects that may arise during testing of these products at ARAI for certification and how to take care of these during the product development phase.
What is the next biggest innovation to expect in the EV charging space?
EV technologies and the entire ecosystem is expected to grow with a rapid pace. We are already seeing an exponential growth trend. Going forward, the new technologies will only make it more convenient for the EV owners to find more and more charging stations (from different CPOs) right at the convenience of their dashboard navigational systems. The technology advancements in this domain will soon integrate AI and voice assistants (alike Siri, Alexa etc.) suggesting when and where the car should be charged, automatically booking a slot on driver’s confirmation.
The car will communicate with the chargers with necessary authentication and identification programs enabling the driver to just plug the vehicle to start charging, and all the required processes involved to make a successful charging session will be automated under the hood. Innovations and technology work like magic, you cannot predict what is next but it will surely take the EV owner’s experience to the levels where it will have zero anxiety and no hassle charging their Electric Vehicles.
We also see a couple of new areas for development -
(a) There will be power grid focussed smart charging. (b) Central Power house with very high capacity with multiple charging points so that many vehicles can be charged from a single charge-park.
How will the charging infrastructure evolve and what charging models would be the most suitable in the Indian context?
As it is being predicted that in the electric vehicle segment, India will see the massive growth of two wheelers and three wheelers within a very short span of time as compared to 4 wheelers. For AC charging, our upcoming LEV series may get a good share of the market as more and more electric two wheelers are increasing their market share. Similarly, there may be a lot of growth potential for Robin for three wheelers. Talking about the Indian context, the government should standardize the charging socket for 2W and 3W just like they have done for 4W.
However, in DC charging, there may be more opportunity in the passenger bus segment as more and more state transport corporations are planning to introduce more electric buses.
It is estimated that we will need over 300,000 charging points by 2026 to cater to the needs of the growing 2/3 W EV market. Do you think this achievable from where we stand?
Currently there are less than 2000 charging stations in India. But, in order to increase the EV charging network, the central government has allocated Rs 1,300 crore in the FAME (Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles) scheme. Further, the government has proactively amended guidelines for charging infrastructure development in the country as per ICRA (Investment Information and Credit Rating Agency of India Limited).
While several Public Sector Units (PSUs) and private players have announced plans to foray into charging infrastructure to capitalise on the potential opportunity in the space, ICRA said it expects an addition of around 48,000 chargers over the next 3-4 years at an investment of Rs 14,000 crore.
For 2&3 wheelers, Battery swapping is an alternative solution instead of developing EV charging infrastructure, especially for commercial applications. With stronger government policies to promote more EV charging stations it seems to be possible.
What is your vision for EVs in India and the future for goEgoNetwork?
India is the 4th largest vehicle market in the world. Although the current automobile market is dominated by fossil fuel-based vehicles, the Indian government has set up ambitious targets and enacted conducive policies to ensure that electric vehicles replace fossil fuel-based vehicles as the primary mode of transport.
India’s 2030 vision of e-mobility (i.e., 70 per cent of all commercial cars, 30 per cent of private cars, 40 per cent of buses, and 80 per cent of two-wheeler (2W) and three-wheeler (3W) sales to be electric by 2030) translates into 102 million EVs.
The Government of India seeks to realize the electric dream of 400 million customers by the year 2030. We cater in the same thought process as government has already taken many steps to achieve the same goal.
goEgoNetwork has 1300 charging stations spread in 60 cities in India. With in-house manufacturing factory of EV chargers’ facility for 2W,3W,4W and E-buses, company is planning to establish 8500 charging stations by end of this financial year across the country. We are supporting the Make in India initiative and so we manufacture all the components and chargers at our factory i.e., in Aurangabad, Maharashtra. Our vision is to establish around 2 lakhs charging stations by the year 2025 and every day the company is working to achieve the same by the help of in-house R&D and other departments. We have reached and set our charging station on one of the top most peak in India and highest in the world i.e., in Kaza, Himachal Pradesh leaving a mark and always looking forward to providing EV charging station infra to all the possible landmarks in India.