Infusion to fund expansion of product portfolio, R&D & operations
The Board of Directors of Ashok Leyland have approved an investment of Rs. 1200 cr. in Switch Mobility as equity through its holding company Optare PLC UK. The funds infused will be used for capital expenditure, R&D and meeting operational requirements both in UK and India. The funds will be infused over the next few months after necessary statutory approvals in one or more tranches.
Switch Group of Companies (Switch Mobility Ltd – UK and Switch Mobility Automotive Ltd- India) house the Electric Mobility initiative of the CV major, Ashok Leyland, focusing on e-Buses and e-LCVs. Over the last few years, Switch India has had major success in garnering orders from State Transport Undertakings. As on date Switch in India and UK has over 800 + buses plying successfully and has an order book of over 1200 buses. Switch India had a successful launch of India’s only Double Decker e-Bus last year.
In September 2023, Switch India launched its state-of-the-art e-LCVs. The company has signed MOUs of over 13000 vehicles for its much-awaited e-LCVs which it will start delivering from the fourth quarter of the current fiscal.
Dheeraj G Hinduja, Executive Chairman, Ashok Leyland stated,“Electric Vehicles especially in buses and light trucks have a very bright future as Governments and private customers are driving the green agenda. We are very happy with the progress made by Switch, and we will continue to invest on building its capabilities. We are confident that Switch will grow further in the European markets with the launch in 2024 of our new E1 12m bus developed specifically for the European market. Our portfolio of electric buses will cover value and premium segments meeting all price points for many global markets”
Shenu Agarwal, Managing Director & CEO, Ashok Leyland said, “The market for EVs is growing rapidly driven by the trend towards Carbon Neutrality. The Government support is further helping the market to expand. We will continue to build capability in this business by investing in product development as well as in expanding operations. Both India and European markets are going to be important growth centers for EV trucks and buses. In the coming year we are expecting our e-LCVs to drive faster customer adoption. The balance sheet of Ashok Leyland can comfortably fund the initiatives of Switch.”