A new approach to a better urban transportation system: We believe that climate finance and a fusion of financial and urban technologies help shape the smart and connected urban transportation of tomorrow. We are looking for partnerships with local authorities and innovative tech/IT specialists that want to improve Indian transportation systems!
Who we are
Three Wheels United (TWU) is a technology-enhanced Indian-Dutch asset financing company for sustainable transportation in India. We provide low-income SMEs with financing for the ownership of smart electric auto-rickshaws (tuk-tuks) to connect informal and formal transportation modes. By removing high polluting vehicles and replacing them with low-carbon emission options (such as electric vehicles), we can increase air quality in, and around cities.
Since 2009, TWU has been the first mover to take a systemic approach to tackling the issues facing the urban transportation market in India. It has built several instruments over the years such as a Financing Company (for-profit financing of green vehicles), a Foundation effectively using a community building approach and consortiums of relevant public and private sector collaborators. Having been active for close to a decade, we have developed a deep understanding of these issues and the market.
Decreasing pollution with 10%
Why has it not been possible to create sustainable transportation systems despite all the efforts? Billions of euros have been invested into public transportation infrastructure and hundreds of silver-bullet technology apps. All with the goal of a better and sustainable urban transportation network, but is hasen't been fully successful. Fourteen of India's cities are still in the world’s top 20 most polluted cities. Auto-rickshaws are responsible for 10% of this pollution.
The second issue is that auto-rickshaw drivers are among the most marginalized groups, they are underbanked and struggle to generate a decent income. Thus far, existing transport solutions are disconnected, thus being inefficient and insufficient, eventually adding to congestion and pollution.
Auto-rickshaws are vital to India’s urban transportation systems and have been India’s dominant modes of transport to travel from ‘door to door’. However, with the enormous increase in physical size of the Indian cities, distances travelled between origin and destination has increased. The rickshaw should mainly serve as a vehicle for the "first and last mile" mobility to connect the passenger with public transportation system. Want to see more? Watch the video below this item!
TWU, recently selected as one of the world’s most innovative Climate Finance instruments, has a proven and scalable model with a unique triple positive effect on people, planet and profit. Our vision is to transform the world’s most polluted urban spaces into emission-free, smart cities. A place where we shape sustainable urban mobility systems while creating fair income opportunities for all. Formal and informal transport solutions will have to be integrated, to allow for smooth transit from door-to-door. This requires innovative (inclusive) finance, technology and infrastructure as an integrated network of solutions.
TWU is currently piloting smart-electric-auto-rickshaws as an integrated feeder system to connect people to bigger transportation systems. Partnering with the Metro Companies in Bangalore and Chennai we aim to scale this model to all major cities in India.
TWU has an extensive network and knowledge to offer. We are looking for:
- MoU’s/Partnerships with local parties in other cities, (e.g. metro companies);
- Innovative collaborators (e.g. technology, IT, logistics) from India and The Netherlands on a similar mission.
- Partnerships with DFI’s, foundations, corporates etc. with an interest in helping to shape climate resilient cities.
- Partnerships with asset owners and managers looking to put their capital to work with a triple bottom line opportunity.
Do you think we can mean something to each other? Do you have questions, suggestions or comments? Feel free to contact us, or leave a comment below!