Switch Mobility, the electric vehicle division of the Hinduja group, has engaged in a strategic partnership with Chalo, an app-based public transporter, for the deployment of 5,000 electric buses across India.
The MoU initially signed for three years will see 5000 EV buses operating across metros and some cities. The total estimated value of this deal is close to $1 billion. Funding for the manufacturing of these buses will be overseen by Switch and OHM Mobility's private equity fund, which is expected to conclude shortly. Putting these buses on the road will boost last-mile clean mobility, which has already received a significant boost from the government with its RFP to acquire over 5,500 electric buses.
Switch, and Chalo will invest jointly in the deployment of electric buses in cities where Chalo is present. While Switch will be responsible for manufacturing buses, both will be jointly responsible for the operations. Chalo will deploy its consumer technology solutions, including the Chalo App and the Chalo Card, which will provide amenities such as real-time bus tracking, digital tickets, and trip itineraries, as well as decide routes, frequency, schedules, and pricing.
Welcoming the MoU Mahesh Babu, CEO, Switch Mobility India and COO, said the last mile clean mobility landscape is changing the way people travel, especially in cities. Chalo’s connection with its customers and our advanced electric vehicle products will further advance this. Also, the partnership reflects the vision and values of Switch Mobility to accelerate the development of clean, sustainable electric transportation solutions.
Mohit Dubey, Co-Founder and CEO, Chalo, said that this MoU would help significantly reduce around 286,000 CO2 emissions since many people in India travel by bus. These buses will reduce the carbon footprint and fuel import bills, a critical demand from the government of India. He further stated that he was confident that this partnership would propel the move towards building more sustainable cities.