Singapore fintech GECKO plans pre-Series A round in early 2022 when acquires EV bike-maker SWAG

(ASEAN Startups) GEKO Life Pte Ltd (GEKO), a Singapore -based fintech company for the electric vehicle (EV) market acquired SWAG EV , a Singaporean pr emium EV motorcycle brand, the fintech announced today in a press statement.

Singapore fintech GECKO plans pre-Series A round in early 2022 when acquires EV bike-maker SWAG

Following the acquisition, the combined SWAG and GEKO group plan to hold a pre-Series A funding round, with a combined entity value of $ 25 million in early 2022. Funds raised will be for inventory to satisfy projected sales, technology development, building the loan book, market expansion, and building brand awareness in key markets.

GEKO will fully own SWAG, which will be retained and continue operations as usual. Via the fully-cash acquisition, GEKO aims to accelerate the growth of both brands through parallel expansions and exclusive, in-house financing from GEKO.

The acquisition, which was made for an undisclosed amount of cash, marks GEKO’s ambitions to tap into Southeast Asia (ASEAN)’s growing EV market, and Thailand in particular considering both SWAG and GEKO’s presence in the country.

GEKO CEO E.K. Ong said, “Together, GEKO and SWAG deliver tremendous value to the marketplace: attractive EV motorcycles meet equally attractive financing options. For qualified buyers, the purchase experience will be seamless. The profile of EV buyers tends to be socially conscious and comfortable in adopting new technology. Our combined value propositions fit that buyer profile perfectly.”

“We are very excited about adding the SWAG brand to our portfolio to further accelerate our push into the EV two-wheeler market and expect to take prime position quickly,” added Ong.

As ASEAN encourages the adoption of EVs, Thailand has embraced electric two-wheelers at a record pace. In 2020, around 14 million new motorcycles were registered in ASEAN, with Thailand accounting for over 1.8 million units, reaching sales of up to $4 billion . Over 3,000 of these were EV two-wheelers, accounting for a 100% year-on-year increase. Backed by strong government support and increased awareness of electric vehicles, Thailand aims to have one million EVs on its roads by 2030.

SWAG premium branding offers a unique proposition for urban drivers, backed by its partnerships with Thailand Post and local energy giant Banpu, and an expanding network of dealers and aftersales support centers.

With two EV motorcycle models, SWAG currently has more than 250 EV bikes on the road in Thailand . The impending launch of a third model in March 2022 , is expected to propel sales and cement SWAG’s market leadership.

Despite the growing demand for EV bikes in Thailand , however, financing options for consumers are limited due to an unbanked or underbanked population.

GEKO’s focus on facilitating hire-purchase financing for buyers of EV motorcycles in Thailand seeks to address this gap. GEKO is currently the only fintech microfinancing platform in Thailand offering to hire purchase customers with e-KYC, AI-driven credit scoring, fully flexible installment plans, tokens for prompt payments, and carbon reduction contribution for EV adoption and positive driver behavior.

With more than 350 EV motorcycles of various brands under financing, GEKO is one of the largest EV bike financiers in the Thailand market, the fintech said.

“In 2022, we expect to see at least another 1,000 SWAG bikes on the road in Thailand , and 500 bikes on the road in other ASEAN countries, predominantly in Indonesia ,” Ong added.

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