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EV subscription provider Onto attracts £126m in funding round

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UK-based electric vehicle (EV) subscription provider Onto has attracted a further £126 million in its latest funding round.

The combined equity and debt Series B round has accelerated the start-up’s total funding to almost £177m and boosted its plan to use to expand both at home and overseas.

Online technology news website Tech Crunch reported that Swedish VC Alfvén & Didrikson had lead the round on the equity raise, with British investment company Pollen Street Capital providing a senior-secured asset-backed debt facility.

Onto did not disclose how much of the round came from equity versus debt, it reported, but said it plans to double its fleet size every three to six months and that any new vehicles will be used as collateral.

The EV subscription start-up offers UK-wide home delivery and a subscription model which includes 1,000 miles per month, insurance, service and repair, and free access to more than 11,000 public EV charge points.

Last year it launched Onto for Business, providing companies with a flexible, no commitment car subscription solution for employees.

Commenting on the latest funding boost for the business, Onto chief executive Rob Jolly said: “While two out of three UK drivers want their next car to be electric, the transition can be expensive and daunting.

“At Onto we've been changing the rules of the game for car ownership through our no-commitment, all-inclusive subscription service. Our focus is on providing an easy, flexible and affordable alternative​,​ and we're seeing huge ​demand.

“This funding will allow us to further expand our operations in the UK and help more customers step into the world of EVs without being tied into long contracts or faced with large upfront costs.”

Onto’s existing investors ADV (Legal and General), Cerebrum Tech Limited and JamJar also participated in its oversubscribed equity round, alongside new investments from TotalEnergies Ventures, Vlerick Group, Dutch insurer Achmea Innovation Fund and, the family office of ex-Goldman Sachs asset management chairman and member of the House of Lords, Jim O’Neill.

In May, vehicle subscription business Wagonex said interest for car subscriptions had 'grown dramatically' in the last year.

The company said that consumer searches are exceeding 11,000 a month - 10 times more than the same period last year.

Last year, Volvo Car UK officially launched its single payment Care by Volvo car subscription service which accounted for 8% of its retail sales, said Volvo UK MD Kristian Elvefors in March. 

“After all the effort we’ve put into building the company and getting the tech just right, everything is clicking into place and gathering pace.”

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