British startup OX secures £1.2 million in grant funding to deliver the world’s first clean sustainable transport ecosystem in emerging markets
There are currently three billion people globally who lack access to basic transport provision, which creates barriers to markets, healthcare, and education. OX is a London, England-based social impact startup OX that’s on mission is to deliver sustainable, affordable transport in emerging markets, which will lead to significant opportunities to empower businesses and individuals.
Utilizing a mobility-as-a-service model akin to Uber, OX has recently received three grants totaling £1.2 million to develop their electric vehicle technology and deliver the world’s first clean transport ecosystem in emerging markets.
The most recent grant, awarded by Innovate UK in January 2021, secured OX funding to develop the OX truck cabin to meet UK legislation. This will ensure the vehicle is able to operate within all global markets, as well as creating the opportunity to offer the OX truck as the first off-road capable electric pickup truck in the UK. OX will be partnering with Penso’s specialist engineering team which will lead the design and market certification of the truck.
The announcement of the latest project follows the award of two grants in October 2020, which involve OX working alongside battery design company Potenza Technology to develop the electric OX truck. The first project, supported by Innovate UK funding, will enable a feasibility study into an electric powertrain for the OX truck, optimizing the vehicle’s zero-emission technology.
Running in parallel, OX has also secured funding from the Advanced Propulsion Centre, as part of their Advanced Route to Market Demonstrator program, to build an electric prototype of the OX truck that will be able to operate in developing markets. The vehicle will be showcased at CENEX’s Low Carbon Vehicle event in September, the UK’s foremost low carbon vehicle event which will be attended by key stakeholders from industry and Government.
OX is building this clean transport ecosystem through the development of the OX truck, the creation of a digital platform for transactions to take place, and the recruitment of local drivers who will operate the entire service in their area. The OX truck is the only purpose-designed electric vehicle for emerging markets and was originally designed by Formula One innovator Professor Gordon Murray CBE. As well as being zero-emission, the truck is 30% cheaper to run per tonne than the diesel trucks currently available in the market over a 20-year lifetime.
With affordable transportation in poor countries, OX is able to create opportunities and empower businesses and individuals. For instance, providing farmers in rural areas of emerging markets with an economical way to transport and sell their crops for higher prices in cities.
Commenting on the funding, OX’s General Manager Simon Davis, said: “Innovate UK and the Advanced Propulsion Centre use a competitive and tough assessment process, so it is a fantastic vote of confidence in OX that we have been awarded a third grant. This project will enable us to accelerate the development of our unique zero-emission OX truck and open up new markets for us.”