Ola said on Monday that it signed a memorandum of understanding with the Tamil Nadu government in India to build what it says will be the “largest scooter manufacturing facility in the world” in the South Indian state as the Indian ride-hailing company begins a new drive with electric vehicles.
The Indian ride-hailing company sponsored by SoftBank said it will invest approximately $327 million in setting up the plant, which it says will generate nearly 10,000 jobs and have an initial capacity to manufacture 2 million electric vehicles per year.
The move comes as Ola plans, according to a person familiar with the matter, to introduce and expand its two-wheeler electric vehicles in multiple markets in the next two quarters. Earlier this year, Ola Electric, which spun out last year, absorbed Amsterdam-based Etergo. The Netherlands has a scooter fleet that uses swappable, high-energy batteries that have a range of up to 240 km (149 miles).
The start-up plans to replicate similar vehicle model manufacturing, the individual said.
In 2016, Ola launched its two-wheeler service, which sees someone driving a passenger around like the cab business, and has generated livelihoods for more than 300,000 people in India. Ola has made big bets on a two-wheeler in recent years, one of India’s most valuable startups, to extend the scope of its services to smaller cities and towns across the country.
In a tweet, Ola said the new factory would enhance India’s electric vehicle ecosystem and serve, among other markets, customers in Europe, Asia and Latin America.
We are proud to announce our plans to set up the biggest scooter factory in the world. This is a big achievement for Ola and a proud moment for our country as we are increasingly advancing towards realising our vision of moving the world through shared and owned mobility towards sustainable mobility solutions. This will be one of the world’s most modern production facilities. Bhavish Aggarwal, Chairman and Group CEO of Ola, said in a statement that this factory will demonstrate India’s capacity and talent to manufacture world-class goods that will cater to global markets.