2020-12-24
Ashok Leyland rebrands Optare as SwitchMobility, launches global e-vehicle plans

Ashok Leyland rebrands Optare as SwitchMobility, launches global e-vehicle plans

Ashok Leyland Ltd has announced that Optare Group Ltd (Optare), its majority-owned UK arm, has been rechristened as SwitchMobility (Switch) as part of its drive towards electrification and new mobility service. With the recommended new structure, Switch will be placed to become Ashok Leyland's global arm, concentrating on electric vehicles and green mobility solutions.

Introducing the new logo and name, Dheeraj Hinduja, Chairman, Ashok Leyland believed Optare is adopting a new identity and logo as 'Switch', which signals the parent's strategic ambitions in electric and Green mobility. Towards this, Ashok Leyland is examining various options to bring all EV initiatives of Ashok Leyland under switch Mobility Ltd.

This strategy echoes the clear growth prospects in the global LCV & electric bus market, which is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of more than 25 percent and to range $50 billion by 2030.

"To capture part of that market, we are considering EV initiatives through Switch that could include financial participation and strategic tie-ups,” he further added.

Switch will build on the achievement of Optare in the UK, where it is a top player in electric buses, with more than 150 of them presently operating effectively in its home market. Optare, the forerunner of Switch, was lately named OEM of the Year (Bus/Commercial Vehicle) at the prestigious 2020 EVIEs Awards. Following the successful delivery of 30 electric double-decker buses to Metroline in London, the company is presently accomplishing orders for operators such as Tower Transit, London, and First York. This will create a foundation for the expansion of Switch’s operations in Europe and growth in India and other parts of the world, he added.

Vipin Sondhi, Managing Director & CEO, Ashok Leyland Ltd, added: “Ashok Leyland is a pioneer in delivering innovative commercial vehicles and mobility solutions. With our proposed new structure, Switch will be positioned to become the potential global arm of Ashok Leyland focused on electric vehicles and green mobility solutions."

This step will facilitate Ashok Leyland to focus on the development of new EV platforms through Switch including next-generation buses, PODs, and E-LCVs, and swiftly scale up the EV business, he added.

Andrew C Palmer, Chairman, Optare Plc, added, "The reorganization of the Optare group permits us to continue to serve customers with the portfolio of products we have today while positioning SwitchMobility Ltd at the forefront of the commercial EV space, which should benefit the entire organization.”

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