US: Zap attracts $10m funding

By just-auto.com editorial team | 6 August 2008

Electric vehicle manufacturer Zap has announced that the Al Yousuf Group, a Dubai-based conglomerate and investor, is providing a $10 million financing arrangement for future working capital.

"Orders for Zap's full-line of electric vehicles have been increasing as a result of the company's rapidly expanding dealer network," said Zap CEO Steve Schneider. A year ago, Zap had 20 dealers, a number that has increased to fifty. The company says it has also seen dramatic growth in scooter sales through its seventy scooter and bicycle dealers in the past year.

Zap added that demand for dealerships is growing in the US and abroad and expects the Company to add a significant number of new dealers and distributors over the next 12 months.

Zap Chairman Mr. Eqbal Al Yousuf said: "This is the opportunity of a lifetime for Zap and we are ready to seize the moment."

Zap Chairman Eqbal Al Yousuf is President of The Al Yousuf Group, one of the largest distributors of automobiles in the Middle East.

Zap introduced the Xebra in June of 2006. The designers of the Xebra said that because electric vehicles are significantly different than gas-powered cars, they require a fresh sales approach. Xebra vehicles are attractive because they are practical, affordable and, most important, they are available for delivery today in an era of record gas prices when few electric alternatives exist, Zap says. The vehicle is designed for in-town driving at speeds up to 40 mph and can recharge at any normal 110v outlet like a cell phone.

The Xebra is manufactured in China to achieve affordable pricing on a global basis.

Business fleets have also been field-testing Zap vehicles, including Dominos Pizza, UPS, Coca-Cola, El Pollo Loco and others, the firm says.