The transition towards clean mobility is complete only when there is adequate charging infrastructure set up in the country. While there are EV makers who manufacture vehicles and set up the network, some set up the infrastructure alone. However, there are a few companies focused on helping EV users locate existing charging outlets, be it a mall, or any place the public can access.
One such company is ElectricPe, an EV charging platform that is looking to make battery charging points and battery swapping stations accessible. Founded in 2021 when the Indian automotive industry was still recovering after multiple lockdowns and the EV market was becoming widely accepted, Avinash Sharma and Raghav Rohila wanted to offer a one-stop solution for EV owners. “Affordable, clean mobility is a fundamental need,” said Avinash, the Co-founder & CEO of ElectricPe, in a conversation with Express Mobility.
He said, “Until we have EV charging solutions at a click of a button, large-scale adoption of EVs will take time. We are building the single largest and most convenient platform for finding charging solutions of any kind.” EV customers have preferences when charging as some opt for quick charging, while others might want slower options. “We are working on all of this, plus the provision to pay on one platform, the ElectricPe app,” said Avinash.
ElectricPe is tying up with independent operators and network operators to help customers find the nearest charging points. “Since electricity is available everywhere, societies, parking lots, malls, and theatres, every point has the potential to become an EV charging point,” said Avinash. So the question is, do OEMs benefit from such an idea? Answering this, Avinash said, “It helps OEMs sell more.”
One of the biggest factors affecting EV sales is charging points. Customers always have it in the back of their heads as to where the next charging point is, and how do they pay for it. “Our app helps OEMs sell more because we are tied up with them, and the customer can find charging locations no matter where they are on this platform,” added Avinash. Doing so also benefits independent charge point operators because their stations will be utilised.
Expressing his opinion on the hindrances the country faces towards faster EV adoption, Avinash said, “If somebody wants to set up a fast charger, the availability of power is a concern. If somebody is looking at setting up a charger at a petrol station, the drawback is real estate. If you are looking at office spaces, a low-cost charging solution is a constraint from a maintenance point of view. These are some hindrances when looking at the broader picture.”
Speaking about the ‘Workplace Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Guidebook for Corporates in Delhi’, Avinash said that there is so much information when it comes to charging, various types of charging, and even battery swapping. He said, “There has never been one place to look up for all this information, and the book does exactly this. The guidebook creates awareness amongst corporates for the need for EV charging, helps in the selection of the right product, and also help in deciding how many charging points are required.”
The book was developed by the Dialogue and Development Commission of Delhi (DDC) in partnership with World Resources (WRI). The book details the ideal locations to set up charging stations and how to maintain them. The guidebook also speaks about how solar power can be utilised to power these chargers. The advantage is that all this information is in one place. “ElectricPe is working on making the information on the guidebook operational,” said Avinash.
Concluding the interaction, when asked about the importance of range or the availability of charging points when it comes to EVs, Avinash said, “It is definitely the availability of charging points because when you take other countries, for example, they have the charging infrastructure. When you have more charging points, the range anxiety in a customer’s head goes down. However, until then, the range is important.”