Gogoro, a Taiwanese company that deals with battery-swapping infrastructure and sustainable mobility technology, launched a 50/50 joint venture with Belrise Industries to invest $2.5 billion (Rs 20,500 crore) over eight years to construct energy and battery-swapping infrastructure in Maharashtra. In Davos, a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
was signed with the state government. In an interview from Davos, Gogoro founder Horace Luke said: “We will put up smart battery stations to begin with in top 10 densely populated cities in Maharashtra, including Pune and Mumbai. India is the holy grail where we need to put our solutions.” Luke said the company had a proven technology with over 1.2 billion batteries and it was doing around half a billion battery swaps in South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Indonesia, among others. The partner was chosen because of its expertise, he said. It accounted for 35 per cent of body chassis and suspension parts for two-wheelers in the country. Luke, however, said the investment would not only come from the two (only initially) but they expected to rope in climate and infrastructure funds and even vehicle makers.
The joint venture happens as the government is putting the finishing touches on a draught swapping policy meant to promote better interoperability. By opting for battery swapping rather than paying the full cost of the battery (which makes up 40–50% of the cost of the car), it also aims to lower the initial cost of purchasing an electric vehicle.