Lithium Urban Technologies, a commercial EV fleet operator, entered into partnership with renewable energy solutions provider Fourth Partner Energy to build charging infrastructure across the country.
Both companies formed a 50-50 joint venture named Shuchi Anant Virya. It unveiled its first electric vehicle (EV) charging hub in Gurugram having capacity of charging 25-30 vehicles simultaneously. The facility will be used initially to charge Lithium’s fleet to Wipro and American Express in Gurugram.
Under the venture, Fourth Partner Energy will provide a mix of onsite and offsite solar solutions and RE trading options to power Lithium’s fleet, whereas the latter will be the anchor client offering base demand across hubs.
Mr Vivek Subramanian, Co-founder & ED at Fourth Partner Energy, spoke on the synergies between EV and PV (photovoltaic) being centred around a reduction in carbon footprint. “The global transition to electric mobility can be considered truly green only when the increased demand for energy is met by clean, renewable sources – Shuchi was formed to address this opportunity.”
Currently, Fourth Partner has a pan-India portfolio of 370 MW of solar assets for clients like Coca Cola, Walmart, Schneider, Skoda, Ferrero, TCS and McDonalds. “Partnering with Lithium helps both companies better leverage our strengths in providing sustainable solutions and cost benefits to India’s leading corporate houses,” Mr Vivek added.
The government is currently working in improving public transportation and easy adoption of EVs in order to reduce emission levels as seven of the 10 most polluted cities in the world are present in India. Under the FAME scheme, the Centre is aiming 30 per cent electric mobility by 2030.
Lithium’s all-electric fleet of over 1,000 vehicles deployed across Delhi-NCR, Hyderabad, Pune, Bengaluru and Jaipur provides to over 30 corporate clients including Google, McKinsey, Credit Suisse and Barclays, eager on reducing their carbon footprint as well as their transportation costs.
Mr Vikash Mishra, Head of External Relations, Lithium Urban Technologies, said, “Businesses are becoming increasingly conscious of better environmental practices. Solar-powered EV charging infrastructure will not just close the loop on procuring clean energy for electric vehicles but will also result in improved cost efficiency. The domestic EV market is expected to grow by 35 per cent annually till 2026 and fleet operators will be the first to embrace this change. Lithium is readying India for this future of shared, connected, electric mobility. With the help of Fourth Partner Energy, we are confident of enabling this transition in a zero-carbon manner.”
A second charging hub is already been set up in Pune under the JV. “The Pune facility is India’s largest EV charging hub for four-wheelers, capable of charging over 40 vehicles at a time. Shuchi plans to set up 12-15 such hubs which include a couple more charging hubs across Delhi-NCR, and at least one each in Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Mumbai,” said Mr Vinayak Kathare, Business Head at Shuchi.
The two companies plan to invest about Rs 20 crore (US$ 2.86 million) and set up 12-15 EV charging hubs in the near term.