Gogoro scores ‘Ultra Mega Project’ in India

Image: Gogoro

Gogoro is in for a major deal in India. Specifically the State of Maharashtra has offered Taiwan’s electric scooter maker to enter into an ‘Ultra Mega Project’ to manufacture vehicles, battery packs and battery swap stations.

The deal would be one of the most significant LEV investments in Indian history and exceed $1.5 billion, including financial incentives and support from Maharashtra. The project was outlined in an open letter by the state government to Gogoro, and both parties already hold an MoU to this effect that they agreed upon in Davos this year.

The Maharashtra government categorises Ultra Mega Projects as strategic investments exceeding $500 million that usually result in incentives to ensure successful project execution. Gogoro’s request for financial incentives was approved and endorsed by Maharashtra, and the two parties said they expect to complete the agreement “soon”.

Devendra Fadnavis, Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra, said they had provided Gogoro with the necessary financial and other vital incentives “to usher in a new paradigm shift in the way we will move people across metros and cities”. He added they were “creating a fertile ecosystem for local manufacturers who will avail the necessary tech transfer”.

While details such as the number of swap stations remain scarce, Maharashtra appears to ask Gogoro to start replicating the company’s business model from Taiwan in India. The proposed project would run over eight years, resulting in a battery-swapping and energy storage system as well as manufacturing capacities.

Gogoro is to “establish its India vehicle, smart battery and battery swapping station manufacturing in Maharashtra and deploy their industry-leading smart battery infrastructure in the state, generating approximately 10,000 direct and indirect jobs,” said Hon. Chief Minister Shri. Eknath Shinde.

Gogoro plans to build what it calls smart energy infrastructure in Maharashtra that establishes the company’s battery swapping stations as a “leading source for mobility and energy storage”. The concept relies on its business model in Taiwan, which it recently deepened when Gogoro partnered with Italy’s Enel X in April to combine thousands of battery-swapping stations into one virtual power plant. Gogoro and Enel expect the VPP to incorporate all 2,500 stations in Taiwan with the stored batteries on stand-by to balance the grid by either adding or receiving excess energy this year.

“Building on Gogoro’s successful deployment of an open battery swapping network that supports multiple vehicle makers in Taiwan, we plan to proceed in partnership with the Maharashtra government to bring Gogoro vehicles, smart batteries and swap stations to India,” explained Horace Luke, founder, and CEO of Gogoro. “We are focused on creating a domestic supplier ecosystem that allows for domestic growth and foreign market expansion.”

The company expects to be deploying battery-swapping infrastructure across Maharashtra in late 2023.

With more than 120 million residents, Maharashtra is India’s largest industrialised State, with a gross domestic product of more than $450 billion that accounts for 16 per cent of India’s industrial output.

Gogoro was founded as an electric scooter manufacturer in Taiwan in 2011. The company soon became known for its sharing services and early rollout of battery swapping stations. Beyond Taiwan, the company is looking to establish networks not only in India but also China and recently completed an IPO in the United States. It is also active in the Philippines and South Korea.



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