British International Investment

Battery Smart

South AsiaManufacturing

Battery Smart is building India’s largest network of battery swapping stations for commercial 2 and 3 wheeler electric vehicles (EV) with an aim of accelerating EV adoption by making it simpler and more affordable for the mass market.

Our investment

Description of the investment.

We invested in Battery Smart to support climate action and to increase economic opportunities for low-income drivers of commercial 2-wheeler and 3-wheeler vehicles in India.

Impact information

Applies to investments made from 2019 onwards. The tabs in this section define what we expect to achieve through the investment, assessing the potential impact of the investment against six dimensions of impact. You can find more details on our methodology of assessing impact here.

What?

Impact

Support climate action towards transition to net zero (SDG 13.2) ? Provide enhanced economic opportunities (SDG 8.5)?

How?

Primary Secondary

Direct: Reduced GHG emissions resulting from increased adoption of commercial electric vehicles. ? Direct: BII’s investment will be used as growth capex for Battery Smart to expand operations in India

Economic enabler: Increased access to affordable EV battery swapping services will enable 2 and 3- wheeler commercial drivers to increase productivity.

Who?

Stakeholder Geography Characteristics
Planet

India

India is the world’s third largest CO2 emitter and home to 22 out of the world’s 30 most polluted cities. The transport sector is one of the highest emitters of GHGs with autos-rickshaws contributing about 10% of total carbon emissions. Recognizing this, the government of India has pushed the ‘FAME India Scheme Phase II’ – a policy that is supporting electrification of public transportation and shared transportation. ?

Customers - Drivers

Majority of drivers are migrants from outside Delhi who are seeking economic opportunities.

How much?

Scale Depth/Duration

Planet: This investment is expected to enable an increase in avoided emissions from 2,994 tCO2e to 24,560 tCO2e by 2024. Long term projections indicate that Battery Smart will have avoided 1,631,044 tCO2e by 2027. ? Customer - Drivers: Expected increase in total customers1 from 13.3k to 48.9k by 2024. Long term projections indicate that Battery Smart will reach 2.78m reach by 2027.

Planet: Since operations began, the company has produced 5,518 tCO2e of emissions as a result of charging batteries from the grid. In comparison, petrol fuelled vehicles would have emitted 8,512 tCO2e. Battery swapping enables commercial e-rickshaws to avoid the equivalent of 35% of emissions that would have been released by petrol-fuelled rickshaws travelling the same distance. ?

Customer - Drivers: Efficient: swapping increases drivers’ productivity as it takes 2 mins as opposed to a 4hr charging time, resulting in an increase in driver revenue by ?300-500/day. ?

Affordable: swapping enables low income drivers to afford electric vehicles as batteries are a high recurring capex. ?

Reliable: swapping reduces the range anxiety (i.e. the fear of not finding chargers) among drivers which is likely to increase adoption of EVs.

Contribution/additionality

Contribution/additionality

Financial additionality: Capital is not offered in sufficient quantity. Battery Smart is raising a $30m convertible round funded by existing shareholders and their commitment falls short of the capital need by $7m which BII’s equity injection would partly address. ?

Environmental and social information

  • Environmental and social summary

    A high-level description of the environmental and social aspects of the investment. This may include a summary of key environmental and social risks identified during environmental and social due diligence (ESDD); key elements of an environmental and social action plan (ESAP); or ways in which we plan to support the investee improve environmental and social standards, such as through their environmental and social management system (ESMS); as well as any other priority areas agreed with the investee.

  • Environmental and social risk

    A risk category rating, which indicates the level of environmental and social risk associated with an investment. For an explanation of the categorisations used, see here. We consistently provide an environmental and social risk category for all investments screened from 2023 onwards.

Environmental and social summary

We partnered with our fund manager to co-invest in this company, including BII jointly developing an ESAP. The ESAP included items related to hiring environmental and social staff, developing an ESMS, fire safety and supply chain management.

Environmental and social risk

Medium-Low

Reporting and Complaints Mechanism

The Reporting and Complaints Mechanism allows anyone outside BII to report alleged breaches of the business integrity or environmental and social provisions of BII’s Policy on Responsible Investing. This includes breaches made by BII, a BII investee, or a portfolio company of a fund in which BII has invested. The Reporting and Complaints Mechanism Rules are available here. Reports and complaints can be submitted by email to [email protected] or by mail. See more details on our Reporting and Complaints Mechanism here.

For any other general enquiries contact us at [email protected]

  • Key facts

    First published

    When the investment was first published on the website database.

    :
    October 2023
    Last updated

    When the last quarterly update of the website database occurred.

    :
    March 2024
    Project number

    An identifier number shared by investments in the same project.

    :
    D6113
    Status

    The current status of the investment (green flag for active and red flag for exited).

    :
    Active
    Region

    The geographical region where the country is located. We currently invest in Africa, South Asia, South East Asia and the Caribbean. In 2023, BII’s investment mandate was extended allowing it to invest in regional funds linked to Ukraine, with the majority of activity expected to begin post-war. Investments outside these regions were made prior to 2012 under previous investment mandates.

    :
    South Asia
    Sector

    We prioritise those sectors that facilitate development and need our capital the most. Our priority sectors contribute towards many of the Sustainable Development Goals. They range from investing in the power infrastructure that will provide people with better access to electricity, to investing in financial institutions that direct capital to the individuals and businesses that need it the most.

    :
    Manufacturing

    We provide capital in the following ways: directly – through direct equity, direct debt, guarantees and other non-intermediated financial instruments; and indirectly – principally through investment funds.

    For direct investments and fund investments, this is the date BII committed capital to the investments. This is typically the date on which legal agreements are signed by all parties.

    For the portfolio companies of our fund investments, this is the date (either the month or the quarter) on which the fund committed capital to the portfolio company.

    For direct equity investments, this is the date at which British International Investment exited the investment.

    For debt investments, this is the date at which the final debt repayment was made.

    For funds, this is the date at which the fund was terminated.

    For underlying fund investments, this is the date at which the fund manager exited the investment.

    The total amount committed, per financial instrument, per investment, on the date BII becomes subject to a binding legal obligation to provide funding or assume a contingent liability. This information is provided in US dollars.

    For direct investments, this is the amount that BII has committed to the business or project. For fund investments, this is the amount BII has committed to the fund.

    The currency in which the investment was made.

    Investment type :
    Equity
    Start date :
    June 2023
    Amount :
    $3.01m
    Currency of investment :
    INR
    Domicile

    The company or investment fund’s place of incorporation.

    :
    India
    Climate finance

    Indicates whether the investment is climate finance qualified or partially climate finance qualified and the type of climate finance (adaptation, mitigation or both). We define climate finance using the multilateral development bank (MDB) and the International Development Finance Club (IDFC) Common Principles climate finance methodology. See Common Principles for Climate Mitigation Finance Tracking and Common Principles for Climate Change Adaptation Finance Tracking. We provide the climate finance qualification and type for commitments from 2020 onwards, which is when we launched our Climate Change Strategy.

    :
    Fully qualified
    Climate finance type:
    Mitigation

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