Vidyut (VT), a platform for EV financing and vehicle lifecycle management, has raised $4 million in a mix of equity and debt in a round led by Force Ventures, Veda VC and a clutch of strategic angels in the clean-energy space, the company said on December 8.
Sujeet Kumar, cofounder of Udaan, Sahil Barua cofounder and CEO of Delhivery, Kunal Shah, cofounder of CRED, Swiggy’s cofounder Sriharsha Majety and Lohum’s Rajat Verma also participated in the seed round.
The startup will use the funds to expand to more cities and plans to double the headcount in its credit, engineering and sales teams in 12 months.
“We will scale up the offering across OEM partners and geographies. We will double the headcount as well,” cofounder Xitij Kothi told Moneycontrol.
Most of Vidyut’s business was concentrated in Bengaluru and Delhi but with the new funding, the firm was looking at cities like Chennai, Hyderabad, and Pune, Kothi said.
Founded in 2021 by Kothi and Gaurav Srivastava, Vidyut aims to make commercial EV ownership affordable, and a risk-free proposition for customers through its ownership plans.
VT offers two ownership plans: a hybrid financing model of a vehicle loan with a battery subscription, which brings down the upfront EV cost by 40-50 percent, and a traditional term loan plan.
Using battery health data and its proprietary underwriting model, VT manages to extract a high residual value for EVs, helping customers get an effective interest rate of 7 percent. This is almost on par with the ROI offered by PSU banks for conventional vehicles with an internal combustion engine (ICE).
“The traditional financiers find it difficult to underwrite an EV Vehicle because the way it runs is very different from an ICE vehicle, this is why penetration of financing is much lower…Now 80 percent of the commercial EVs owners are small business owners and our focus is to make financing easier for everyone,” Kothi said.
While the firm is not in the passenger vehicle segment, however, in the long term, it plans to offer financing for retail passenger vehicles as well.
“To scale big in India, the power lies in unlocking the value from small fleet owners and consumers who will ultimately drive the adoption. Vidyut’s solution is among the few that address the nuances of the EV ecosystem and solve one of the biggest pain points in the sector using technology,” said Udaan founder and angel investor Sujeet Kumar.