The round will be led by Fidelity-backed global investor Eight Roads, which has invested in Indian startups such as Pharmeasy, Whatfix, Shadowfax and Icertis. Exponent Energy’s existing investors including Lightspeed India and AdvantEdge VC will also take part in the round, the people cited above said.
Exponent Energy had last raised $13 million in August 2022 in a Series A led by Lightspeed that valued the Bengaluru-based startup at around $45 million.
“Initially, the company was seeking to raise close to $40 million but the round is getting finalised at $25 million,” one of the persons cited above said. “Exponent has been in the market to raise funds for the last three to four months,” the person added.
Another person said the company is looking to deploy the fresh capital to expand its charging infrastructure into more cities while also enhancing its battery portfolio for additional use cases.
“Currently, the company is present only in Bengaluru, and is finalising plans to expand into Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad and Ahmedabad,” the person said. “Further, Exponent develops batteries right now for three-wheeler cargo EVs…it is close to developing batteries for three-wheeler passenger vehicles and buses,” the person added.
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The company started selling its products in February this year and is looking at Rs 600 crore in revenue for calendar year 2025.Exponent Energy declined a request for comment.
Founded by former Ather Energy executives Arun Vinayak & Sanjay Byalal Jagannath in 2020, the company has developed a technology that claims to fully charge a vehicle in 15 minutes, much less than the regular time of at least three hours.
To ensure rapid charging, EV makers have to install Exponent’s battery pack in their vehicles, and the end user can charge the vehicle using Exponent’s own charging stations. The company currently has 30 such charging stations.
According to data sourced from Tracxn, following the previous funding round, Vinayak was the largest shareholder in Exponent Energy with a 19.8% stake, followed by YourNest VC and Lightspeed with 14.9% and 14.7%, respectively.
Eight Roads, Lightspeed and AdvantEdge VC did not respond to queries seeking comment.
EV funding drag
Exponent Energy’s potential fundraise shows investors are hopeful on the company’s long-term prospects. It comes at a time when the startup ecosystem is battling a protracted liquidity crunch impacting firms’ ability to raise capital or do so at lower valuations.
“The understanding is that while there is room for growth in the EV and mobility space, the sector is still in an investment phase. But investors are picking and choosing,” an investor focused on the mobility sector said.
“Even in the case of Exponent, the initial amount that the company set out to raise was higher than what has been closed,” he added.
In September, two-wheeler maker Ather Energy closed a Rs 900 crore fundraise (around $110 million) from existing backer Hero MotoCorp and Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC. Initially, however, the company was looking to raise around $250 million. Similarly, three-wheeled EV maker Euler Motors is close to finalising a $25 million round, which is less than the $60 million it raised last year.
In May this year, electric mobility startup BluSmart raised $42 million in a mix of debt and equity from existing investors with almost half of the round subscribed by its founders – Anmol Jaggi, Punit Goyal, Anirudh Arun, Tushar Garg, Rishab Sood, and Rahul Jain – and the leadership team.
The internal fundraise round came in the backdrop of the BP Ventures-backed BluSmart’s $250 million round failing to materialise.
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