India's first EV experience platform, BLive plans to expand into offline retail. Goa-based BLive will launch its first offline store in Hyderabad, Telangana in October, following expansion in southern India. The company hopes to launch 20 offline stores by the end of the financial year with a sales target of 30-50 units per month for each one.
"Initially, we are looking for a deeper penetration in the South Indian market, with focus on Hyderabad and where our value proposition of choice and expertise becomes more important due to lack of an option. In the long run, we plan to focus on Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities across India," said Sandeep Mukherjee, Co-founder & COO, BLive.
Post the launch of the offline stores, customers will be able to visit them to experience and choose from a range of electric two-wheelers from multiple brands. BLive aims to offer ease of ownership with simple interest-free EMIs and a cardless loan facility through its offline stores.
BLive's offline stores will follow a franchise model and are inviting people that are eco-conscious and keen on joining the EV revolution. "There are a lot of queries from potential franchise partners who are keen on setting up these stores from the same tier-2 cities," added Mukherjee. BLive will be managing from behind the curtain.
BLive already has Hero Electric and Ampere for e-scooter, and Hero Lectro, GoZero, Coppernicus, Felidae, E-Motorad, Lightspeed, Rohm, Meraki, Roulik, Toutche and Svitch for e-bikes on its e-commerce platform. Commenting on the tie-up with Ola Electric, Mukherjee responded, "Ola Electric has become one of the key players in the Indian EV market and we would love to explore strategic partnership opportunities with Ola Electric. At present, we are working on understanding their business model. We will let you know as soon as there's any development."
Commenting on the demand expected from the offline stores, Mukherjee noted, "There is a growing demand for electric vehicles in the country. The online and offline store works in synergy, the journey starts online and ends offline. The growth is exponential, two-wheelers are at the forefront of it. India being a large market for two-wheelers, there will be a steep demand for e-scooters. We are expecting 10x growth in the next 5 years in the industry."
BLive started with offering electric vehicles tours in 2018 in Goa and has expanded to 8 states, 1 Union Territory and 17 cities across the country. The firm launched the online EV store for electric two-wheelers in 2020.
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