Mahindra Electric Mobility Ltd, the wholly owned subsidiary of Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd (M&M), is in talks with Japan’s Softbank and several other potential investors, including original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), for strategic investment in the automaker.
According to a report in the Business Standard, Softbank may pick up a minority stake in Mahindra Electric.
The company spokesperson refused to comment on the same.
Last week, Mint reported that M&M was open to alliances for Mahindra Electric, including an equity partnership.
Pawan Goenka, managing director, M&M, said global sales volume for EVs is still low, while the number of companies entering the segment is fairly large, and these include traditional automakers as well as startups.
“Therefore, collaboration will be the key in powertrain, which means the battery, the motor, power electronics and the charger. That’s the reason we have set up Mahindra Electric as a separate company, but now we have started to see how we can get strategic partners, so that we can pool in our volumes and create an electric powertrain supply company,” he said.
The company would function like a consortium of manufacturers, he added.
“We are talking to various OEMs who are interested… take equity in Mahindra Electric and become partners,” Goenka said, adding partnerships would make the EV business commercially viable.
The senior company executive had suggested manufacturers explore three kinds of partnerships within EV ecosystem –involving sharing of powertrains, well-engineered vehicle platforms and branding.
M&M has invested more than ₹1,700 crore in Mahindra Electric even as the latter’s cumulative losses stood in excess of ₹700 crore as of 31 March, 2019. To turn around its business, the company is eyeing EV components export, besides its own captive requirements.
On 5 February, the company launched the electric variant of KUV100 model — eKUV — at a starting price of ₹8.25 lakh, making it the most affordable electric car in the domestic market. The price was calculated after taking into account the benefits given under the government’s Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric vehicles in India programme or Fame 2 scheme.
Goenka told Mint last week that shared mobility would clearly drive the business case for EV adoption in India.
This article was first published on livemint.com