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Mayor Sadiq Khan clarifies result of £3 million ‘poor investment’ in electric PHV firm Breathe

Updated: Aug 16, 2023

Image credit: Greater London Authoriy

Sadiq Khan clarified the result of a £3 million ‘poor investment’ in Breathe during a recent London Assembly Meeting.

During the meeting, Hina Bokhari Assembly Member (AM) raised concerns about a reported poor investment decision made by Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, resulting in potential losses for the Mayor's Energy Efficiency Fund (MEEF). Bokhari specifically referred to the recently announced collapse of electric vehicle firm Breathe, in which the GLA had invested £3 million.

Addressing Mayor Khan directly, Bokhari said: "Last month it was revealed that, following a poor investment decision that you just mentioned, the MEEF is set to lose millions in taxpayer money as the electric vehicle firm Breathe goes into administration. £3 million invested by the Greater London Authority (GLA) on your watch in a start-up that has now collapsed a mere 15 months later. Do you agree this is not good enough and you have let Londoners down?"

In response, Mayor Khan sought to correct the record, stating: "Chair, I am sorry to disappoint the Member, but that is just factually incorrect. The position is that Breathe has been purchased by Otto Car Limited, with the sale including the novation of the loan to the new owner. The £3.2 million investment is secure."

The Mayor of London went on to explain the investment process, highlighting the existence of an investment committee responsible for evaluating all investment decisions. He emphasised that due diligence, research, and an investment policy are all integral parts of the process. Furthermore, he clarified that the Mayor's role does not extend to fund management, as this responsibility lies with Amber Infrastructure.

Khan added: "So disappointing to the Member, great news to everyone who worked at Breathe and all those at Otto Car Limited and to Londoners who care about this issue, is that there is not a loss to the taxpayer or to the private sector working with the MEEF."


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