Exclusive Interaction – Varun Goenka, Founder CEO, E-Chargeup

 E-Chargeup Solutions    is a platform for battery swapping especially for electric three wheelers. Started its operations in June 2019 and catered to 100 vehicles in Delhi, Noida and Gwalior, this is   a homegrown company, specialising in energy solutions for sustainable mobility in the domestic market.   Varun Goenka, Founder & CEO, E-Chargeup Solutions, tells us more in this interactions.

Battery swapping model for B2C market and the ideology behind its inception

In India 2.4 million E-rickshaw drivers are daily providing last mile connectivity to 60 million commuters and are still struggling with 10 hours of charging, limited revenue and investment in batteries in every six months. All these challenges are because of the conventional lead acid batteries and low quality infrastructure. This data was enough to see the market potential and the pain points of this fast growing community, which has outpaced China in number of EVs on road.

Chargeup was formed as an energy and revenue partner for these e-rickshaws, where it enabled 2 minute swapping, zero capital investment and additional revenue streams for this community. Till today 75 drivers are on board who has sold their old “paani wali” batteries and switched to our advanced lithium tech batteries. With various subscription plans these E-rickshaws are able to cover 170 kms daily and have increased their daily income from Rs 850 to Rs 1800 per day. Chargeup has been impacting lives and living its mantra of “Yogakshemam Vahamyaham” where we ensure the welfare of our customers, contributors and collaborators.

 Impact of Covid-19 on energy storage, EV, Renewable Sector etc.

Covid-19 has impacted largely the renewable and EV sector as both are capital intensive. Passenger Traffic has definitely come down due to the Pandemic which is making life difficult for the E-Rickshaw drivers who are daily wage earners. But on the other hand electric 2 wheeler and 3 wheeler vertical is going to see a surge, because of the increasing opportunity in delivery business. Charge-Up is enabling this for the drivers on their platform which is helping them earn their daily wages.

 Technological advancements for the Green Future – including IT tech 

There are various technological  advancements  happening from battery technology moving from Lead Acid to Lithium Ion to solid state, Internet of Things for tracking and data capturing, fast charging options, but to make them commercially viable mass adoption is necessary. Advancements in  IoT, telematics and GPS along with backend software and cloud services will be needed to optimize and use the products more efficiently.

 Energy solutions for sustainable mobility in the domestic market – and whether it can help the IT industry

As per statistics, transportation is responsible for 14% of global greenhouse gases. With fall in prices for Advanced battery technology and Solar Energy,  Electric Vehicles integrated with Renewable  Energy  Sources for  Sustainable Mobility  is a feasible option today .   IT forms a very strong backbone for the Energy as a service Business and allows for smooth, seamless and remote operations. It also enables important data sets that can be used to enhance revenue of all stake holders. Therefore there is a lot of potential for IT services to grow along with the E-Mobility segment

Whether Li-On batteries can be made in India on a large scale to replace imports from China

What makes the Indian market interesting is its huge consumption. But on the other hand it is also a cost conscious market, whereas in EV where battery is the most important element and composes 40% of the vehicle cost, the quality parameters of the battery cannot be compromised. Li-On battery plants require huge investment and scale including investments in R&D. This scale is still not available in India and therefore, we will still have to rely on China/ Korea or Japan for Lithium cells.

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