BYD’s earning preview indicates the company’s H1 23 net profit will be between c$1.46-$1.64bn, which is a 192-225% increase YoY, driven by very strong sales for its NEVs. Q1 net profit was c$0.58bn, which implies a Q2 range of 0.89-1.06bn, which would represent an increase of 128.6-171.6% YoY. This would be an all-time high for BYD. The company delivered 703,561 NEVs in Q2 23, up 98.2% from Q2 22. BYD expects H1 23 net profit, after accounting for non-recurring gains and losses, to be between $1.30-$1.44bn which would present an increase of between c207%-240%. Bear in mind, these incredibly strong results were against a backdrop of intense competition, due in part to the Price War. These results illustrate the company’s increasing market share, brand power and strong industry chain cost control capability.
Tesla has announced plans to double the production capacity of its Gruenheide factory near Berlin. The Gruenheide factory currently produces 500,000 EVs. However, locals have rather strongly, voiced concerns about water use and loss. This has led to Tesla holding Q&A sessions with state residents, to help soothe these concerns. The company has assured local authorities it will not require additional water supply, as it will use a process called vacuum evaporation to bring nearly 100% of production water back into operations. The process to get local/state approval for this expansion will take at least 3 years, thus meaning the earliest start date for construction on the additional production facilities won’t be until 2026.
VinFast has announced it will be breaking ground on its North Carolina EV production facility next week. This is positive news, after a period of turbulence for the company. This plant was made possible by North Carolina awarding VinFast $1.2bn worth of incentives, which is the largest incentive package, in the state’s (234 years) history. The manufacturing facility is pencilled in to start production in 2025.
The Price War carries on as Ford has announced it is cutting prices, by 6-17% ($6,079 - $9,979) for seven of its F-150 Lightning models, in the USA. The company states these cuts stem from lower battery raw materials costs and scaling production due to increased plant capacity. Ford sold nearly 15,000 F-150 Lightnings between April to June, which was a 119% jump YoY. However, the company has a lot of work to do, to catch Tesla, who delivered 466,000 EVs (a record) in Q2. This is positive news for US consumers, as a lower price point will help ramp up EV adoption.
Tesla started production of its Cybertruck, from its Texan HQ, 4 years after unveiling it. Tesla has pencilled in to start delivering Cybertruck’s by September this year. The Cybertruck single-motor, rear-wheel-drive version, can do 0-60mph in 6.5 seconds and has a range of 250 miles. Along with a futuristic/sci-fi (Bladerunner meets Tron) wedge-shape design, and bodywork featuring almost no curvature. There will be 3 versions offered ranging from $39,900 - $69,900 (excluding government incentives), with differing ranges, charging speeds, and towing capacity.
The UK has secured a commitment from JLR to build a battery plant in Somerset. This is a much-needed victory for the UK, as it has been left in the dust in terms of building out EV infrastructure (due to a concoction of Brexit, a weak economy and a decade-long history of poor Govt policies). The gigafactory is scheduled to start production in 2026 and this will directly create around 4,000 jobs with many more job opportunities created indirectly. The gigafactory is a £4bn investment, however, there is no disclosure on how much the UK government subsidised. UK Energy Secretary, Ben Shapps, did infer it could be around £1bn, whether this figure is precise, is irrelevant, as it is clear that the UK government went all out, to make sure JLR picked the UK and not Spain (which was being considered). It will be interesting to see if this spurs the government to lure other (EV) OEMs to the UK to build factories, by providing a similar subsidy package.
Redwood Materials, a USA-based battery recycling start-up, is on course to raise $700m, implying a valuation near $5bn, to help fund its first major plant in Nevada. Bear in mind, the company raised more than $700m, in 2021 with a valuation of $3.7bn, and earlier this year received a conditional commitment for a $2bn loan from the US Department of Energy. Redwood Material was founded by JB Straubel, who co-founded Tesla, to help create circular EV supply chains, by recycling the materials in batteries and reducing the need to mine for more of the minerals.
Rocsys, a Dutch-based provider of autonomous charging systems, has raised $36m in a Series A funding round, led by SEB Greentech Venture Capital. The capital will be deployed to support its R&D efforts to add features such as intelligent parking guidance, expanded software integrations for vehicle navigation fleet management systems, and additional remote diagnostics and teleoperations support.
In a Series C funding round, Xiamen Hithium Energy Storage Technology has raised over c$622m, co-led by BFS Capital & Life Private Equity Investment. The capital will be deployed to expand its manufacturing facilities, purchase advanced machinery, R&D and increase its geographical footprint. The company revealed it has ambitions to IPO (domestically), however, no timeline has been given yet.
ChargeX, a Munich-based charging infrastructure solutions company, has raised €11.5m in a Series B funding round led by UVC Partners. The capital will be used to roll out its Aqueduct charging system, Drop Power Sharing app, and to expand its distribution network.
Raft (formerly known as Vector.ai), a London-based logistics provider, has raised $30m in a Series B funding round, led by Eight Roads. The raised funds will be used on R&D, focussing on developing and deploying AI-powered products.