‘I like your sincerity, he said’

LN Revathy Coimbatore | Updated on January 24, 2018

Hemalatha Annamalai, Co-founder, Ampere Vehicles

Ratan Tata invests in Coimbatore-based electric vehicle manufacturer

Hemalatha Annamalai’s joy knew no bounds when news about Ratan Tata investing an undisclosed sum in her company, Ampere Vehicles Pvt. Ltd., went viral this morning.

Talking about her meetings with the Chairman Emeritus of Tata Sons, Hemalatha, founder and Chief Executive of the company, told BusinessLine that she first learnt that Mr Tata was coming to Isha Foundation for a programme last November. “I wanted to meet him. I wrote to his office and followed it up by speaking to his people there. Three weeks later he replied stating, ‘I will meet you’.”

“And this happened a month later, on December 23 at Vivanta by Taj in Coimbatore. He gave me an appointment for 10 minutes, but it went on for close to 45 minutes. He had me talk about our product, listening all the while. I invited him over to our factory, but for want of time, he could not make it.”

“He however got to see the electric cycle, and a couple of our other products which I had carried to showcase, spoke about the difficulties when Nano was first rolled out and how it finally clicked.”

“Then around New Year, I met Mr Tata, this time in Mumbai, when he asked about Ampere’s business model and our financials. It was a long chat. At the end he simply said ‘I like your sincerity’, expressing delight over the nature of the product and our work in rural market.”

“I was again called for a meeting in March-April. This time, Ampere’s existing investor – Forum Synergies – also came along to meet the Chairman Emeritus of Tata Sons. The rest is now history,” Hemalatha said, as she spoke about Ratan Tata’s investment in this start-up company.

Without divulging Mr Tata’s investment in Ampere, she said, “We will use the funds to scale up our operations and hire talent.”

She further said the intent of the exercise was to raise larger funds. “We want to raise ₹20 crore, expand to other States as well, albeit in a phased manner.”

Published on July 08, 2015

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