Evergrande New Energy Vehicle, the NEV offshoot of the Chinese Evergrande Group, has raised around half a billion US dollars in fresh capital by selling treasury shares to a number of external investors. Among the investors are prominent names like Tencent and Didi Chuxing.
The deal involves 176.58 million existing shares for at least six investors, who will now receive around two per cent of the shares in the company. Evergrande Group itself still holds 72.95 per cent of the shares after the transaction. The Chinese group has not disclosed what the new funds will be used for, speaking only of “general corporate purposes”.
Evergrande is pursuing extremely ambitious plans for electric cars and announced its first six models to be offered under the Hengchi brand in early August. They are numbered quite simply from 1 to 6 (Hengchi 1 to Hengchi 6) and include various body styles from sedans to SUVs to a seven-seater van. The Chinese company has not yet given any technical details, nor an exact schedule when Hengchi 2 to 6 will go into production.
What is clear, however, is that series production of the first model Hengchi 1 is to start in 2021. At the ground-breaking ceremony for the e-propulsion factory in May, it was still said that the Hengchi 1 was to be presented in the first half of 2020 and was to go into series production from 2021. Instead of a more detailed presentation of the Hengchi 1, in early August there was ultimately a preview of the first six series.
Evergrande has been a household name in the Chinese electric car market since 2018. At that time, the Group announced ambitious plans in the e-car sector through its subsidiary Evergrande Health. In the summer, the Group subsidiary was renamed from ‘Evergrande Health Industry Group Ltd’ to ‘China Evergrande New Energy Vehicle Group Limited’. In short form, the company will be called ‘Evergrande Auto’. The Board of Management justified the renaming by saying that New Energy Vehicles had become its most important line of business.
The Chinese group originally grew up with real estate and now wants to become one of the largest producers of New Energy Vehicles. Up to now, Evergrande has mainly purchased know-how – either by means of a takeover as in the case of NEVS, by partial entry as in the case of Koenigsegg, by joint venture as in the case of Hofer or by cooperation as in the case of FEV Group, EDAG, IAV Group, AVL and Magna.