When it comes to powering vehicles, internal combustion engines continue to dominate the roost, but there are hints that they are on their way out, at least in certain areas. Sweden, Denmark, and the United Kingdom are proposing to phase out diesel and gasoline automobile sales by the end of the decade, while Australia and California are also moving in that direction, although at a slower rate.
Part of this process must include making it simpler for individuals and companies alike to move to electrification, such as by expanding access to electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, as the United States has stated as part of its $1 trillion infrastructure plan. However, enterprises will also want assistance in purchasing and running their EV fleets, which is where a new firm called Papaya plans to step in.
Papaya’s software, which was soft-launched in February, is aimed to assist fleet operators in sourcing and managing electric or light-electric vehicles (LEVs), a problem that cofounder and CEO Santi Ureta describes as “extremely fragmented and opaque.” To help propel things forward, the London-based firm announced today that it has received $3.5 million from a group of institutional and angel investors.
One of the issues Papaya is attempting to address is the complexity of multimodality – electric fleets need various types of cars for different use cases. An e-van, for example, maybe more suited for larger-scale supermarket deliveries, whilst a cargo cycle or e-bike may serve food delivery. And for each kind of car, there are a plethora of different suppliers, maintenance companies, and other service providers to keep things running smoothly.
Papaya connects the dots between fleet operators (such as Gopuff or Deliveroo) and service providers, which may include vehicle suppliers (such as Hop or Otto), maintenance providers (such as Fettle or Cycledelik), insurance providers (such as Laka or Zego), or even storage spaces designed for housing and charging EVs (such as Reef or Infinium Logistics)