Gogoro, the company behind Taiwan’s thriving two-wheeler battery-swapping ecosystem is poised to succeed where others have tried and failed — and now it has the money to do so.
The company closed its merger with special-purpose acquisition company Poema Global on Monday and now trades on the Nasdaq under the ticker GGR. Gogoro expects about $335 million in cash proceeds from the agreement.
Gogoro’s public debut and success in raising money suggest there is a market for battery-change stations, but only if the conditions are right. About ten years ago, the Israeli startup Better Place tried it failed spectacularly popularize battery change for electric cars. But it was both too early in the collective journey of electric vehicles for such a business to succeed and too big an investment to build all the infrastructure necessary to easily massively swap the batteries of large four-wheel vehicles.
Buoyed by more favorable market conditions and much better timing, Gogoro has been able to unlock the recipe needed to scale up its battery swapping system. But that doesn’t mean that Gogoro’s business model will work everywhere. change to make it successful, and Gogoro knows that.
Instead, the company is targeting the markets where it can win, namely densely populated Asian cities where two-wheel vehicles are already popular. Gogoro will use the new funds from its IPO to expand further in Taiwan as it branches into larger markets such as China, India and Indonesia.
Why changing batteries is important
Since its inception in 2011, Gogoro’s “Swap & Go” battery-swapping solution – allowing riders of electric mopeds, scooters and motorcycles with Gogoro batteries to easily replace an empty battery with a fully charged one – has been ubiquitous in Taiwan. In combination with Gogoro’s Smartscooter, which the company first dropped in 2015 to advance its business model, the battery exchange system has enabled the adoption of electric two-wheelers.
In Taipei, a quarter of all new scooters sold last December were electric, and nationally 97% of e-scooters sold in 2021 were either Gogoro scooters or powered by Gogoro’s batteries and charging infrastructure, according to data shared by the Taiwanese government. .
just last week, Taiwan said all new passenger cars and scooters must be zero-emissions by 2040 – the government is committing about $5.8 billion (TWD 168.3 billion) for this purpose, including the use of subsidies and other incentives to increase the share of new electric scooters by 35% by 2030 and 70% by 2035.
“That’s a huge support for what we do,” Horace Luke, CEO and founder of Gogoro, told Marketingwithanoy. “The business needs to grow to take advantage of that transition and support our partners. We have Yamaha, Suzuki Taiwan, Aeon, PGO and some guys are looking for us to build the infrastructure as they switch to electric. †