NextDrive Electric: Providing retro-fitment solutions

NextDrive Electric is founded by Sethu Raj and Vimal Kumar Patil, it is a Bangalore based startup. They convert any existing diesel mini trucks to electric and help logistic operators to save 50-60% on operational expenses.

In the words of Vimal, “Electric vehicle space is a booming technology and has a lot of positive benefits on the environment that we live in. The keywords for the future are NEW and RENEW. We are confident of making a huge impact in the societal-environmental axis.” 

We got an opportunity to talk with Vimal, one of the co-founders of the NextDrive Electric. And I am sure; his startup story will inspire you. Look at the journey of Vimal as a co-founder. See what he has to talk about his venture?

Give a brief info about your startup?
We convert any existing diesel mini trucks to electric and help logistic operators to save 50-60% on operational expenses.
What made you start your startup and what problem does it solve?
Electric vehicle space is a booming technology and has a lot of positive benefits on the environment that we live in. Pollution being the major challenge that we address, we also address the challenges that revolve around fuel expenses, service downtime and reliable operations for any logistic operator
Tell us about yourself, your previous jobs/ventures? What were you doing before this startup?
I am a computer science engineering graduate hold more than 9 years of experience in IT business development where my career revolved around software, telephony, automation and Audio Visual Integration businesses.  My co-founder Sethu holds about 13+ years of experience in product design and development in various companies and holds a post-graduate degree in Mechanical Engineering.
Where is your startup based out of? Why do you think that is the best place for you?
We are based out of Whitefield Bangalore. Karnataka being the leader in EV implementation we are surrounded by a healthy EV companies and have easy access to most of the resources that we require.
As a startup founder, what are you paranoid about? What keeps you awake at night?
One thing that any founder would be paranoid about is the vision why they started in the first place. Eco-Friendly vehicles, making a shift towards renewable sources of energy are few things which are always on top of my mind.
Who are your competitions and how are you better than them?
We have no considerable competition as of now though we have heard few companies evolving in the spectrum. What differentiates us from others is our business model and reliable vehicles that we provide.
How hard is it to have a work-life balance as a startup founder and how do you manage it?
There is no work life balance during initial days of any start-up as it would constantly eat your blood sweat and money on daily basis. All attention is focused on the company. It`s like raising a baby during its initial days.
Have you raised funding? If yes, then we would like to know the details. If no then please tell us if you are looking to raise.
We have bootstrapped the company to date and are in the final phases of closing an investment round.
What is the most important priority for this company?
Ethics and Customer satisfaction are the 2 things that we give the highest importance to our company.
How do you think this might evolve over the coming month.
The way further will be very attractive for any company working in the electric vehicle space and so holds good for us too.
What’s the biggest misconception people have about you? Why do they have that? What’s the reality?
EV`s are expensive is the biggest misconception that people have. The cost of ownership, when compared to a traditional vehicle, is far less in terms of electric vehicles.
What gets you excited about this company?
The most exciting fact is being the first company to put an electric mini-truck on Indian roads much before even tesla did it. Though the technology is quite in its initial phase but we are excited to be the first company in India.
Tell us how a day in your life looks like? Your schedule for a day right from the time you get up till you hit the bed at night.
Everyday including Sunday is quite the same. Wake up at 5.30am, a few newspapers and coffee, get ready by 8.am and you keep working till 9.00 pm either with meetings or calls. By 11.00 pm it`s bedtime.
Tell us about your team and how did you meet each other?
Me and Sethu were both looking for opportunities in the field of EV in 2014. We happened to meet over a business meet and since then we have become good friends. We decided to go together in 2015 one year after we met.
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