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SoftBank-backed Ola Electric buys Dutch scooter company Etergo

FILE PHOTO: An employee speaks over his phone as he sits at the front desk inside the office of Ola cab service in Gurugram, previously known as Gurgaon, on the outskirts of New Delhi, India, April 20, 2016. REUTERS/Anindito Mukherjee

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - A unit of SoftBank Group-backed Indian ride-hailing company Ola will buy Amsterdam-based electric scooter company Etergo as part of its plan to locally build electric vehicles (EVs), the company said on Wednesday.

Ola Electric did not disclose the amount it was paying to acquire Etergo, which was last valued at around 84 million euros ($92 million), according to a source familiar with the deal.

Etergo’s scooters use swappable, high energy density batteries that give it a range of up to 240 km.

Ola Electric said it will begin EV production work this year and plans to launch its first electric scooter in 2021.

“The company aims to build a suite of electric and smart urban mobility solutions ... in India and around the world,” it said.

Ola already offers rides on electric scooters and three-wheeled vehicles made by other manufacturers on its platform, and has set up battery-swapping stations, across several cities in India.

“The future of mobility is electric, and the post COVID world presents an opportunity for us to accelerate the adoption of electric mobility globally,” said Bhavish Aggarwal, founder and chairman of Ola Electric.

Reporting by Aditi Shah; Editing by Ramakrishnan M. and Saumyadeb Chakrabarty

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