Transport Neo seeks $30m to drive ambitious EV plans By Andy Sambidge November 9, 2023 Neo Neo is set to start operations with a fleet of 100 two-wheelers across Dubai in December 100 electric motorbikes launching next month Vision includes vehicle manufacturing in UAE Expansion into ride-hailing planned for 2024 “Last-mile” logistics company Neo Mobility is launching in Dubai next month with a fleet of 100 electric two-wheeler vehicles. The company secured $10 million in pre-launch seed funding from investors including green asset financing platform Delta Corp Holding. It is now in talks to raise $30 million to finance growth plans which includes a vehicle manufacturing base in the UAE and expanding to Abu Dhabi in 2024. Abhishek Shah, Neo’s co-founder and CEO, said it is also planning ride-hailing service and a phased rollout of electric vehicle (EV) fast charging infrastructure across the UAE. Dubai company’s EVs aim to deliver ‘last mile’ in 100 cities Electric car sales on the charge due to UAE policy Abu Dhabi bids to become electric vehicle manufacturing hub Neo’s two-wheeler fleet is manufactured in India but Shah said a manufacturing and assembly line in the UAE is scheduled to launch in early 2025 to support expansion across the Middle East and Africa. The fleet will be powered by a battery swapping network, which is currently being installed across Dubai’s commercial hubs and districts, enabling Neo riders to swap batteries within 60 seconds. Shah said Neo will also offer riders critical illness and injury insurance coverage along with life insurance and fixed working hours. Shah said it was in discussions with e-commerce, logistics and food delivery firms to roll out its services – and that it also wanted to help them achieve their sustainability goals. There are more than 90,000 motorbikes on UAE roads, resulting in 480,600 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year, according to Neo, whose electric motorbikes have a driving range of 175km. NeoNeo CEO Abhishek Shah wants to scale operations to 5,000 EVs by 2025 Competitive market Neo will face competition from the likes of One Moto, which has secured $40 million financing to deploy 10,000 vehicles in the UAE by next year and lists Talabat, Carrefour and Majid Al Futtaim among its customers in the Emirates. Its ride hailing service will compete with companies such as Uber and Careem. “Neo will have its own licence to operate and is looking to work with ride-hailing firms to electrify its fleet as well as launch corporate EV fleet solutions for them.” Shah said. The UAE is forecast to see a 32 percent increase in sales of passenger EVs this year as the government launches a national policy to support the sector’s growth. Sales are expected to reach almost 22,000, up from an estimated 16,442 in 2022, while longer-term calculations suggest the total number of EVs will exceed 370,000 by 2032, representing 11 percent of the UAE’s passenger vehicles.