Prakriti E Mobility, the app-based taxi service, intends to start with its B2C service from December 2022 onwards under the name 'Evera'.
Nimish Trivedi, Co-Founder and CEO, Prakriti E Mobility, in a conversation with Mobility Outlook, noted that initially, the company will limit its services to airport runs. He added that operations will be limited to Terminal 3 of the Indira Gandhi International Airport for the first three months before expanding to other terminals.
Prakriti E Mobility previously operated in the B2B space, providing EV cabs to corporate businesses looking to reduce their carbon footprints. Trivedi stated that for the new B2C venture, the company has partnered with MakeMyTrip (MMT), under which the latter will provide bookings from the airport to the city to the EV cab service company.
Meanwhile, on the B2B side of operations, it intends to expand its corporate along with its partners, such as Forex and Carzonrent, among others, as it induces more EVs to its fleet.
Notably, the company intends to distribute its resources equally between the two business operation models, B2C and B2B. However, the co-founder added that the b2b business will always generate more revenue than the b2c side.
In terms of fleet size, the company currently has 250 Tigor EV/Xpres-Ts running on its platform, with Prakriti E Mobility owning 60% of the fleet. The company recently announced signing a deal with Tata Motors to purchase 2,000 of these e-sedans by October 2023.
According to the CEO, the company intends to increase its fleet size by 750 vehicles by the end of FY23. In addition to the Tigor EV/Xpres-T, the company is considering deploying a few BYD e6 MPVs under its platform as it begins B2C operations.
Strategies, Investments And More
During the conversation, Trivedi mentioned that with the available fleet size, the 'Evera' business intends to focus on high-traffic areas such as airports in the near term. Interestingly, the company's partnership with MMT ensures access to airport rides in any city where it operates.
He said that the company intends to expand to Tier-2 cities from now on due to the high fleet optimisation rate in these cities. However, he added, the expansion to other cities will not occur in the current fiscal year.
For this financial year, the company aims to improve its offering in terms of application while also reaching a breakeven point in revenue.
The company started its journey amid the first pandemic wave in May 2020. As the movement across the country was halted due to the national lockdown, Prakriti E Mobility was forced to look at an alternate business plan to sustain and grow in the market.
At the time, the company ventured into the Government's Jeevan Seva programme, wherein it signed a contract with the GoI for a tenure of two years to provide 24X7 cab services to patients in need, under which it claimed to have helped around 40,000 patients in the two-year tenure of the contract.
Under this, the company had a fixed revenue. However, as the contract got over in March 2022 and it had to work on expanding its business, Prakriti E Mobility's revenues took a hit. However, Trivedi ensured that the app-based cab service platform intends to reach a breakeven point by the end of December 2022.
He added that the goal will be met with the help of a $5 million funding round, of which $2 million has already been received.
In addition to managing its revenues, the company intends to work on other aspects of the business with the newly raised funds.
Starting on the tech side, initially, Prakriti E Mobility sourced its tech from a US-based technology company. However, with the change in business model initially, it was forced to change its technology vendor to an Indian technology company.
Now that the market has stabilised, the company intends to build on its own technology to improve the customer experience. In addition, the company also intends to eliminate existing bottlenecks that customers typically encounter with app-based taxi services, such as ride cancellation from the driver's end.
Other than this, the fund will also be utilised in starting with the b2c side of operations while also increasing the resources such as cabs and charging stations.
Prakriti E Mobility has partnered with Tata Power for its charging requirements, and it claims to have set up around 70 EV chargers across two hubs, in Rajokri and Okhla.
Meanwhile, the app-based taxi service plans to deploy approximately 5,000 EVs on its platform over the next two years while also completing the acquisition of 100% of the fleet, the CEO concluded.