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Inside Ather’s attempts to arrest its slide down the EV pecking order

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Pranav Balakrishnan

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Pranav Balakrishnan

37 reads

Despite being an early mover in the electric scooter race, Ather has now slipped to fourth place in EV two-wheeler sales. For a company lauded for its product development and R&D, Ather now faces an uphill battle to regain lost ground.

March 20, 2024

12 MINS READ

Key Takeaways

  • Despite being a pioneer in India’s EV two-wheeler space, Ather has slipped behind Ola Electric and legacy players TVS and Bajaj in terms of sales
  • While the company is hoping that the launch of Rizta, its upcoming family scooter, will help arrest this slide, the company is working to shore up various shortcomings
  • It is trying to become more agile in execution, even as it looks to put more emphasis on marketing and expand its distribution 
  • The company is also lobbying the government to be included in the PLI schemes that will replace the government’s FAME II subsidies

2024 is a big year for Ather Energy. Not only is the company set to launch its second product, a family scooter, but it is also gearing up to go public later this year. According to reports, the company plans to raise $400 million at a valuation of $2 billion. 

For a company that has been around for more than 10 years, it surprises and disappoints many in the EV industry that Ather has never crossed the unicorn threshold. Its younger rival, Ola Electric*, meanwhile, which launched its first EV scooter in 2021—three years after Ather had its scooters on Indian roads—currently sits on a $5.4 billion valuation. Now the EV two-wheeler market leader, Ola Electric, too, is looking to go public at a valuation of $6-7 billion. 

Even as Ather is looking to sell the public markets on why it deserves a valuation correction, though, it must do so from a position of vulnerability. Despite being an early-mover in the space, Ather has historically been unable to lead India’s EV two-wheeler sales charts. In recent times, however, its standing has come under even more pressure. 

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