Vietnamese electric motorbike startup Dat Bike has raised an additional $8 million in funding, just seven months after it secured more than $5 million Series A led by Singapore-based firm Jungle Ventures.
Since it launched its first product — the Dat Bike Weaver — in September 2019, Dat Bike has set in motion a greener mode of transportation in Vietnam, where gas-powered motorbikes have reigned king for decades. These motorbikes account for 70% of pollutant emissions.
The fresh capital will be allocated for the startup’s tech and product development, hiring for sales, support, R&D, and product teams, and building more capacity in its factories.
“Our mission is to convert all gasoline-powered motorbikes in Vietnam and Southeast Asia to electric,” Dat Bike founder Son Nguyen told Vietcetera in a separate feature story last year.
“Electric bikes have no emissions, no noise. With Weaver (Dat Bike’s first model), we use lithium-ion batteries, which are considered non-toxic and are up to 80% recyclable,” explained Son.
The Vietnam Ministry of Transportation recognizes Dat Bike as the first domestically made electric bike. It uses vertical integration rather than relying on third-party imported electric drivetrains and parts to keep costs down while improving quality. Most of the parts on its products — Weaver and Weaver 200 — are designed by the company, with 80% of its suppliers located in Vietnam, ensuring lesser carbon emissions in procurement and distribution.
The startup has also recently launched a charging station in downtown Ho Chi Minh City, with plans to expand to other cities over the next few years.
“I think if given a choice between an electric and a gas bike, everything else equal, people will go electric. This is simply because electric bikes are strictly better for our planet, and everyone wants to be a better person. Our customers are people who want to be better. They are pioneers and want to make a huge impact by their choices,” said Son.
Dat Bike gained massive attention when Son brought his startup to Shark Tank in 2019. It paved the way for business growth and an increase in sales volume, as well as more awareness of Vietnam’s capacity to make “green transportation” possible.
While the e-bike industry has yet to fully gain momentum in the country, a number of domestic brands are pouring huge investments into developing eco-friendly vehicles. Besides Dat Bike, VinFast and Pega are also leading the e-bike market.
The Vietnamese government has taken significant steps to transform its modes of transportation — from trains to planes — into green by 2050, in support of Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh’s pledge at the COP26 to achieve net-zero emissions.
The Vietnamese leader announced in July that all road vehicles should also be powered by electric or green energy by 2050. During 2022-2030, Vietnam will also pilot clean energy-powered trains on existing railway lines and 100% sustainable aviation fuel for Vietnamese aircraft.
Earlier this year, the government approved the National Strategy on Environment Protection to 2030 with visions for 2050, which aims to ensure environmental security, and establish and develop circular, green, and low-carbon economic models.