Indian EV startup Ather wins $1M investment from Flipkart founders


Ather, an electric vehicle start-up engaged in marketing new-concept electric two-wheelers in India, has won around $1 million (Rs 6.1 crore) investment deal from Sachin and Binny Bansal, founders of Indian e-commerce firm Flipkart.

The company also announced that Raju Venkatraman, serial entrepreneur as well as CEO of MEDALL Healthcare, will also be funding for the enterprise. MEDALL Healthcare runs a chain of diagnostic service centers in Chennai.

Ather, based out of the Incubation Cell, IIT, Chennai, is dedicated to bringing EV technology in India.

The funding will be primarily used for product development, the company said.


The company comprises a team of 15 engineers and designers specialized in electric vehicles.

The startup was the brain child of two IIT graduates, the present CEO Tarun Mehta and CTO Swapnil Jain, who initiated the mission in 2013.

During Ather’s first round of capital raising for 2014, the initial investment was done by V Srinivas who is the founder of Aerospike and the Technology Development Board of Government of India.

Presently Indian EV market has many players for electric two wheelers including Hero Electric, Hero Motors group as well as Ampere Motors.

However, the wider acceptability of the vehicles is restricted due to the limited range provided by the batteries. Improvements in lithium-ion battery technology will help to make them a mainstream substitute to their gas-powered versions.

Flipkart is an electronic commerce company founded in 2007, operating exclusively in India, with its headquarters in Bangalore.

Flipkart’s funding is part of the company’s strategy to expand into new market segments. In July the e-commerce firm raised $1 billion from Tiger Global Management, Accel Partners, and Morgan Stanley Investment Management and a new investor Singapore sovereign-wealth fund GIC.

Flipkart also recently hit headlines when it sold products worth Rs. 650 crore in just 10 hours in a special one-day event – “The Big Billion Day.”