With the augmentation of metropolitan areas into the surroundings, 54% of the Earth’s population residing in Megacities is facing the challenges of energy management and smart transportability. The problems revolving around infrastructure, economic development, industrialization and resource dispensation is competing with the ever increasing urban growth.
Urbanization is expanding rapidly and the given population is expected to surpass six billions by 2045. More people getting cramped in smaller areas means less resources available to be utilized and more pollution and traffic density. To support the survival of metropolis, the technologists and inventors are trying to re-establish an effective and reliable mobility system.
Gogoro – The Electric Scooter Maker
With the aim of “leveraging the power of technology to change the way we consume energy”, Gogoro started working to make man’s ways of operating in the global scheme of energy saving- smarter and cleaner.
The idea of transforming megacities to create modern transportation solutions has been nothing but revolutionizing in the field of science and technology. They have taken necessary steps to combat with the challenges produced by urbanization in the form of smart energy consumption. They not only help in the conservation of energy resources, but also provide with a way-out for the reduction of urban generated pollutants in the environment.
Gogoro is an eccentric hardware startup that is based in Taiwan. The startup was co-founded by Horace Luke and Matt Taylor in 2011. Horace Luke who was previously the Chief Innovation Officer at HTC, which is a mobile phone and consumer electronics company, envisioned for Gogoro to be as creative and unconventional as possible.
Not leaving any aspect of technology unveiled, both the founders have used their knowledge as an anchor to stuck and tackle with the urbanization-induced side effects, to uncover the secrets of energy conservation and management. Almost after three years of vigorous mind storming and experimentation, they were able to successively showcase Gogoro smart products, in 2015.
Products Offered By Gogoro
Gogoro offer products that are earth friendly and provide smart energy for smart cities. They produce Smartscooters, batteries, and phone apps along with the deployment of many of the batter charging and swapping stations.
In Jan 2015, this startup revealed its Energy Network and Smartscooters at Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Smartscooters, which costs around $2620, are basically two wheeled vehicles powered by electric motor (Panasonic Lithium Ion 18650 battery) instead of any external rechargeable power. They are provided with 30 sensors including a digital compass, and a shock and thermal sensor. These vehicles are put together to have high performance, absolutely zero outflow and optimized patterns to minimize energy utilization.
This app updates the riders regarding their battery status of scooters and nearest possible battery swap station. This integration of smartphone apps with the smartscooters makes it customizable with different sound effects and lightning patterns. Furthermore, the condition of smartscooters can be assessed and then serviced regularly through this phone app.
Gogoro Energy Network
Gogoro Energy Network which mainly consists of battery swapping infrastructure has helped installed various GoStations across Taipei. These stations give access to unlimited portable power and also a place to exchange already depleted battery devices for a certain subscription fee. Gogoro has now 595 battery swap stations while supporting 40,790 battery exchanges on the daily basis.
Gogoro 2 Series
Because of the immense appreciation and applaud around the globe, Gogoro announced its Series 2 last year with the addition of 500 GoStation installation in Taiwan. This series provides with bigger and more comfortable seats for two and a large trunk underneath. Along with the customizable ride and efficient version of smartscooter, Gogoro further added an IQ system which includes wirelessly updatable features.
Total Equity Funding Raised
Gogoro has raised the total of $480 Million in 4 funding rounds. After the formation of this startup, $50M was raised in seed funding Series A from an entrepreneur, Dr. Samuel Yin of Ruentex group and Cher Wang.
Next, in the year of 2014 and 2015, around $100 million and $30 million respectively were raised in the equity funding of Series B, by the new investors of Panasonic and The National Development Fund of Taiwan.
Up to the date, leading venture capitalist proved to be the Tamsek Holdings providing an investment of $300M in Series C funding, in Sep 20, 2017.
By Aug 2016, Gogoro had sold around 10,000 smart scooters, and 20,000 by May 2017. After launching their electrical scooters in the city of Amsterdam in 2016, Gogoro also announced the COUP scooter sharing service in 2017 to expand their services to Berlin and Madrid.
Furthermore, reduction of CO2 emission by 23,336 tons has been claimed by this technology based startup. In 2016, Gogoro samrtscooter also got nominated for the “Beazly designs of the year”. Not forgetting the moment when they got featured in Times as one of the “9 coolest gadgets from CES 2016”, and similarly on various other news outlets including Forbes and Engadget.
As each GoStation costs less than $10,000, its deployment in one or two big cities can be possible with the venture that Gogoro has already seemed to raise. Horace Luke has also stated that they are in talks with some urban cities.
However, there is one main problem which constitutes of the mass rollout of swap stations, in the cities with right population density and potential customers. Looking at the work progression up till now, the accumulation of customers can only come after the installation of these stations.
The most favorable target population is considered as the South Eastern Countries where the common source of transportation is scooters. Although, to convince and educate the masses about the effectiveness of these eco-friendly scooters can be a bit complicated.