B: Live, India’s first EV tourism start-up, received Rs four crore funding from DNA Entertainment Networks Pvt. Ltd. The strategic investment by DNA Entertainment was to help the startup build unique travel experiences by innovation and technology. B:Live had earlier raised Rs one crore as seed capital fund from a consortium led by Shrinivas V Dempo, chairman of the Dempo Group and Shivanand V Salgaocar, chairman and managing Director, Vimson Group.
The startup founders Samarth Kholkar and Sandeep Mukherjee, said that the funds would be used to expand market presence and strengthen the technology platform of the company. B: Live is the pioneer of electric vehicle (EV) tourism’ in India offering immersive tours, powered by smart e-cycles. It offers the tourists an intimate experience of the culture and heritage of a destination on smart electric cycles without compromising on comfort and style. The company works closely with several state governments to encourage early adoption of electric vehicles across all tourist destinations in India.
Speaking about the investment, Dr T Venkat Vardhan, chairman and managing director, DNA Networks said, “Experiential tourism industry is growing more than 100 per cent year on year. While electric vehicles are the future of mobility, the company has pioneered the way for experiential ecotourism with an exemplary business model which is poised for growth. Creating extraordinary consumer experiences has been the core of DNA Networks and we are happy to partner with B: Live, an eco-tourism start-up which combines EVs with experiential tourism. The company is on a growth path and will soon be available across all tourist destinations in India and abroad.”
Adding to this, Kholkar and Mukherjee, said, “B: Live has completed over 2000 rides and helped save close to 2 tonnes of CO2 emissions. It is one of the top-rated activities in Goa on TripAdvisor, MakeMyTrip, Airbnb etc. With a strong support from the ministry of tourism, state governments and major hospitality chains, we aim to launch across 10 new locations in India in the next 12 months and 30 locations by 2023. We are also exploring popular experiential tourism destinations in South East Asia and have received a good market response.”
Currently operational in Goa, Pondicherry, and Gujarat, the company serves guests from premium hospitality chains like Taj, Club Mahindra, Marriott, Hyatt, Hilton, Novotel, Radisson etc. to name a few.