Analyst Corner: Upgrade Hero MotoCorp to ‘add’, Gogoro JV to launch EVs

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Hero-branded vehicles would be powered by Gogoro swappable batteries.

Hero MotoCorp (HMCL) and Taiwan’s Gogoro Inc. have announced a joint venture to collaborate on development of a battery-swapping network in India based on the latter’s tech platform. Hero-branded vehicles would be powered by Gogoro swappable batteries.

Gogoro is a global leader in urban battery swapping and smart mobility innovation. This partnership could aid HMCL’s EV products’ acceptance as customer capital cost could be reduced significantly (we anticipate ~30-40%) as vehicles can also be sold without a battery. We believe battery as a service (BaaS) could be an additional revenue stream for the JV; access to this in future be offered to other OEMs too. Recently other OEM’s e.g. Honda, Yamaha, KTM, Piaggio had also announced setting up a consortium for swappable batteries.

We believe this JV is likely to work alongside other HMCL EV investments (Aether). Valuations are attractive (14x FY23E EPS). Upgrade to ADD. The JV would launch Hero-branded electric vehicles (EVs) with Gogoro battery technology and also set up battery swapping platforms across India. This is Gogoro’s first JV outside of Taiwan and promises to be a win-win for both the companies given HMCL’s scale alongside Gogoro’s battery technology, swapping architecture.

Gogoro Network is a globally recognised hyper-efficient battery swapping platform with >375,000 vehicles and 2,000 battery swapping stations. It manages 265,000 daily battery swaps with a total of >174mn swaps to date. Gogoro Network combines the power of connectivity, AI and machine learning.

The partnership could address the need for sustainable, affordable mobility solutions which could aid in expediting the shift towards EVs in India. Leveraging Hero’s market strength with Gogoro’s industry-leading innovations on battery swapping can potentially lead to reduction in upfront vehicle cost (potentially ~30-40%) for the customer.

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