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Home / Companies / Start-ups /  USV makes its first bet in India by backing EV infra co REVOS

Marking its foray into the Indian startup space, American venture capital firm Union Square Ventures (USV), along with homegrown investor Prime Venture Partners, has led a $4-million Series A round into electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure startup REVOS.

USV, which had backed the likes of Stripe, Twitter, Coinbase and Tumblr, invested from its $162-million Climate Fund launched in January.

USV managing partner Albert Wenger said in an interview that the VC firm is geography-agnostic and is keen to back companies offering solutions to address environment concerns. “Our approach is not to think of a geography for the sake of the geography; it is within the context of a thesis... Within the Climate Fund, we are looking at the adaptation to the climate crisis," he said.

“We are also interested in decarbonization of the grid; I think EVs are beautiful, but when you charge an EV, it still emits carbon into the atmosphere. So, we’re not there yet. But I’m thrilled about the subsidies in India for (EV) adoption. A lot of things need to happen, which make for interesting investment opportunities in India," he added.

REVOS, which was founded in 2017 by Jyotiranjan Harichandan and Mohit Yadav, is an IoT-enabled operating system offering smart mobility solutions to make electric two-wheelers and three-wheelers safe and connected, besides helping companies set up charging infrastructure for electric vehicles.

REVOS is piloting its peer-to-peer charging infrastructure network, BOLT, which will allow users to set up a charging point and earn passive income. The BOLT offering includes an IoT-enabled charging point, which is compatible with all portable chargers used for EVs in India.

“Our focus has been around software tech plays and infrastructure plays. REVOS has an operating system and IoT software play on the charging network side. These are areas that we are very comfortable with, and a big part of charging network is also going to be around payments and settlements. Hence, it is very consistent with our comfort areas," said Sanjay Swamy, managing partner, Prime Venture Partners.

It marks the first investment for Prime Venture in the EV space. It had recently anno-unced the first close of its Fund IV at $75 million.

“We are investing heavily into creating a peer-to-peer charging network for EVs, and this will be powered by the community participating in the network. We believe that this is how the (charging) ecosystem will evolve for EVs. REVOS will also work towards reducing the charging time," said co-founder Yadav.

The company has close to 5,000 odd people signed up for its BOLT platform. It has deployed its solutions across 10,000 EVs and charging devices in India, China, Vietnam, Nepal and Egypt. REVOS also works with 30 EV manufacturers, at present.

Over the next three years, the company plans to expand its network to 1 million chargers in 500 cities across India and other emerging markets. It is also planning to launch its solutions across Europe and other parts of southeast Asia.

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