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BW Businessworld

Hola Ola .

Hardcore Auto professionals, particularly the markers might not find this effort a tad frivolous but challenging times make organizations disrupt business models.

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Late in 2019, I had written about how auto sector needs to reinvent itself (on BW). An year and half down the line, we see the first significant move and it is the most unlikely torch bearer that promises to disrupt the space – Ola Electric! So what's unique about the launch?

1. Disruption in the offering -The pallet of colours. Every auto model launched thus far, came with a set of standard options and for the obvious reasons of managing the inventory of different colours and the efficiencies with respect to profit margins, the number of shades was limited.

Ola, promises to threaten the premise by offering a wide variety of shades. Would that work for them or is it a hara-kiri -only time would tell, but as of now, they have clearly made people sit up and notice the fact that the range of colours one could choose from is much larger than what was being offered hitherto.

2. The Recharge game – Those tracking electric mobility have chronicled how the battery recharge outlets for electric vehicles would have a significant impact on the successful adoption of electric vehicles.

While many auto manufactures have rolled out their EV, none took it upon themselves to create a parallel charging point ecosystem. Ola electric claims to have put in place over 100k charge stations.

This is the much needed support system for anyone investing on an electric vehicle and owning these would give a considerable head start to the company

3. Token payment for booking – When was the last time a vehicle launched such audacious booking amount. To book a vehicle paying under Rs. 500/- to me is a clear ploy to measure traction. Investors would most certainly want to understand what the market traction is and going by what is being stated, 100k+ bookings is a pretty decent launch traction to showcase.

4. Shaping Ola Money into a FinTech subsidyWhat do 1 lac + bookings with token advance mean? It means that atleast 80% of these bookings might need financing. And Ola has Ola Money, a wallet not doing too well. Fulfilling these orders on Ola Monet allows Ola Electric to make Ola Money an SPV or a subsidiary in the FinTech space. With more traction, come more bookings and therefore more business for Ola Money.

5. Direct-To-Home deliveryWith changing times, I felt that the auto dealership cannot be sustainable or selfsufficient. It appeared that multi branded outlets were more appropriate. Come Ola and they shift the paradigm further… they challenged the need for having a dealer. This significantly ups the margins and helps Ola become a D2C company These are the most visible changes being made by Ola Electric and am thrilled at the disruption they made.

The critical success factor, however is how well each of these are executed. Hardcore Auto professionals, particularly the markers might not find this effort a tad frivolous but challenging times make organizations disrupt business models. As of now, one can safely say that Ola has diversified and is currently into Shared mobility to electric mobile and FinTech spaces.

Isn’t the future exciting already… Whose turn next?

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.

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Ola Electric Ola Cabs

Satyanarayana Murthy YVS

Armed with Engineering, Business Management academic background and an alumnus of IIM-B, he has had the good fortune of working across varied roles starting from Manufacturing, Sales, Channel Management, Distribution, Brand, Marketing and PR, Business Strategy and Business Management across diverse sectors from Engineering, Oil & Gas and Media. Currently, he consults a few Start Ups and MSMEs besides working on an Analytics Media Tech and Luxury & Lifestyle Market place start up

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