Bengaluru, India, February 9, 2023– Turno, one of India’s leading platform for commercial electric vehicle (EV) distribution and financing, services 20% of the EV market in the country, is today announcing a $13.8 million (~ INR 112 crores) Series A funding as it scales across the country and plans to build proprietary battery technology.
The funding round was co-led by global venture capital firms B Capital and Quona Capital with participation from existing investors Stellaris Venture Partners and Avaana Capital and new investors Alteria Capital and InnoVen Capital. Turno plans to use the funding to build a proprietary battery tech platform to address issues around end-of-life battery value, amid global concerns around EV batteries and e-waste.
Turno delivers a complete total cost of ownership solution to commercial EV buyers. It offers a multi-brand selection of vehicles at the lowest prices through its unique EV sales platform (with both online and physical stores), the lowest-cost financing, and a guaranteed buy-back value on used batteries backed by its proprietary battery technology. Turno’s flagship offering lowers the overall ownership costs for customers by 30% when compared to other EV purchasing options available today.
Founded by Hemanth Aluru and Sudhindra Reddy (ex-Zoomcar CXOs) in January 2022, Turno is currently operational in five states— i.e. Karnataka, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Delhi NCR, and Maharashtra— covering major markets in the South, West, and North of India. Since its inception as a one-stop solution improving the accessibility and affordability of commercial electric vehicles in India, the company has captured approximately 20% market share.
“Today 80-85% of India’s automotive fuel consumption is driven by commercial vehicles with internal combustion engines. Yet, there is a strong desire to transition to a green economy and so, commercial EV adoption holds significant promise. Turno was founded with the mission to convert these “gasoline miles” into “electric miles”, having a significant positive impact on the environment” says Hemanth Aluru, Co-Founder & CEO of Turno.
The company has identified a massive untapped opportunity to create a proprietary battery technology platform to repurpose EV batteries into large scale second-life energy storage systems. This significantly enhances the life-cycle value of batteries and prolongs their usable life avoiding impending environmental disasters such as dumping used batteries in landfills and creating more toxic e-waste. Most importantly, this new technology is the best bet to further lower EV ownership costs, thereby making EVs more affordable and accessible to the masses.
As EV adoption has accelerated globally, so too have concerns about the end of life value of EV batteries and the potential e-waste created by them. Customers who purchase EVs through Turno receive a Vehicle Lifecycle Management app, which gamifies and incentivizes users’ driving behavior to prolong battery life. The app offers a real-time dashboard for consumers to know their guaranteed buyback price for their vehicle’s end-of-life. The company promises an average 25-30% higher buyback than the market, ensuring a complete end-to-end sustainable solution to the core concerns of battery and vehicle lifecycle value in the EV industry.
Sudhindra Reddy, Co-Founder & COO of Turno adds “Our endeavor is to make the EV technology equitably available to everyone through business model innovations that can continually bring down the costs of ownership. We believe this is the only way to make India’s EV mission successful.”
“Commercial EV sales are heavily dependent on the availability of attractive financing options and today the Indian market is plagued by lack of truly customer centric options. Turno has identified a key missing element in the ecosystem that solves the problem of financing as well as distribution and servicing. As a technology enabled omni-channel platform, especially at a time while EV sales are inflecting and climate-tech enabling solutions are fast evolving, we are excited to partner with Hemanth and Sudhindra in their vision to build Turno and transform the landscape of India’s EV market,” said Karan Mohla, General Partner, B Capital and head of early stage investments in India & SEA.
“We’ve been very impressed with Turno’s progress to date in making commercial EVs more readily available across India, and with their intentional work in lifecycle management of those EVs and their batteries,” says Varun Malhotra, Partner at Quona.
The company has forged multiple national level partnerships with leading 3W electric vehicle manufacturers, including Mahindra & Mahindra, Piaggio, Omega Seiki Mobility and Etrio, to sell their vehicles countrywide. They recently announced key personnel appointments across battery technology, brand, growth and operations.
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