Yulu, a bicycle and electric scooter rental startup, on Tuesday said it has raised $8 million (approximately ₹57 crore) from Bajaj Auto Limited. Yulu will source electric two-wheelers from Bajaj Auto which have been co-designed and manufactured exclusively for shared micro-mobility, the Bengaluru-based startup said in a statement.
Bajaj Auto will also consider facilitating the vehicle finance needs of Yulu for a large-scale deployment of its micro-mobility electric vehicles. “The two factors of congestion reduction and pollution control will drive the segment of shared micro-mobility in the future,” Bajaj Auto managing director Rajiv Bajaj said, adding that “coupled with the expansion of mass rapid transport system like Metro in large cities will further boost the demand for flexible last-mile connectivity. In Yulu, we find an experienced and committed partner with robust achievement of success metrics in a very short time. And this is why we decided to partner with them in their journey of bringing Yulu service to every neighbourhood of urban India.”
Bajaj Auto is the world’s third-largest motorcycle company with a top line of more than ₹30,000 crore. The Pune-based company is the largest manufacturer of three-wheelers in the world, an exporter to over 70 countries, and innovator of new products such as the quadricycle.
Yulu said that the fresh round of investment will be utilised for further strengthening the mobility platform and deepening technology solutions for rapid expansion. Yulu deploys machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) to accurately predict the demand and supply of its assets and resources which ensures vehicle availability and operational efficiency. Yulu plans to increase its fleet size to 100,000 electric two-wheelers by December 2020 with an extensive network of its battery-swapping stations across the cities where it operates. At present, it has a fleet of about 15,000 vehicles, according to reports.
“Succeeding in the shared micro-mobility business is incumbent upon creating winning partnerships to ensure assured supply of high-quality electric vehicles in large numbers,” said Yulu co-founder and CEO Amit Gupta, adding that a committed manufacturing partner is crucial to its success. The partnership aims to solve the mobility challenges of urban India in an eco-friendly manner.
Currently, Yulu is present in Bengaluru, New Delhi, Pune, Greater Mumbai, and Bhubaneswar.