Future of the electric vehicle industry in China

All the electric car companies in China — a guide to the 46 top players in the Chinese EV industry

Business & Technology
Illustration by Derek Zheng

Updated December 1: Electric vehicles, smart systems to drive them, and advanced batteries to power them are attracting enormous sums of capital and China’s best engineering talent. These are the companies that are fighting for one of the most lucrative markets in the world. Many of them will be global EV players.


This article was most recently updated on December 1 to include more small EV companies and software providers (over a dozen have been added to this guide since initial publication), as well as a short section on EV battery suppliers. Additionally, the entries on many companies now contain direct links to our China EDGE database.


With mainstream consumer acceptance and government support, China’s electric vehicle (EV) sector is booming. At the same time that China is trying to say goodbye to gas and hello to batteries, Chinese companies are accelerating their development of autonomous features and fully self-driving cars. Cars are computers now, and it will be more and more difficult to make a meaningful distinction between the electric vehicle and autonomous vehicle industries.

According to estimates by both banks HSBC and UBS, three out of five new cars sold in China will be electric by 2030. That would mean around 18 million EVs, and a market size of $360 billion, if the average car cost $20,000. And that’s just for the cars: Secondary industries will bloom in financing, navigation, software, autonomous hardware components, traffic surveillance, and more.

China has one EV veteran — BYD, or Build Your Dream — the Warren Buffett–backed automaker that has been making electric models since 2008. However, Tesla currently makes the best-selling electric cars in the Chinese market. Now everyone else is piling into the industry, from Chinese state-owned auto groups like SAIC to foreign companies like VW, from indebted real estate groups like Evergrande to tech giants like Tencent, Huawei, Baidu, and Didi Chuxing.

So who is who in EVs in China? Utilizing Chinese- and English-language sources, SupChina has compiled information on all the companies currently fighting for a slice of China’s EV pie. Some work strictly in software (for now), but we’ve included them because “smart” features like autonomous driving and mobile device integration are critical to the future EV ecosystem. EV makers use the terms “smart” and “connected” to refer to technology that automates certain tasks by relying on predictive algorithms or connectivity to other devices or a network.

We’re missing some numbers and basic facts, many of which are not in the public domain, as the companies involved are privately held, but we will continue to add to and correct this list as we find authoritative information. We welcome any tips for additional key information at editors@supchina.com.

We have also not included non-electric new energy vehicles, such as hydrogen-powered cars, where China is also a significant global innovator.

Business in the morning.

A lot happens in China’s economy when you’re sleeping. Luckily there’s ChinaEdge – a free newsletter you can read in less than 2 minutes, delivered at 9am ET daily.

List of EV makers

Roughly in order of EV units shipped (click to jump to each entry; to jump back here, click any logo):

  1. Tesla
  2. BYD
  3. SAIC Motor
  4. SAIC Volkswagen
  5. SAIC-GM-Wuling
  6. NIO
  7. Xpeng
  8. Li Auto
  9. WM Motor
  10. Geely
  11. Byton
  12. Enovate
  13. Zhiji
  14. Xiaomi
  15. Dongfeng Motor
  16. Chang’an Automobile
  17. Guangzhou Automobile
  18. Chery Automobile
  19. FAW Group
  20. FAW-Volkswagen Automobile
  21. Evergrande
  22. BAIC Motor
  23. Zotye
  24. Aiways
  25. Great Wall Motors
  26. Human Horizons
  27. Singulato Motors
  28. Hozon Auto
  29. Brilliance Auto
  30. Avatr Technology

List of software and service providers

In alphabetical order (click to jump to each entry):

  1. Alibaba
  2. Baidu
  3. ByteDance
  4. Didi Chuxing
  5. DJI
  6. Foxconn
  7. Huawei
  8. JD
  9. Meituan
  10. Qihoo 360
  11. Tencent

List of battery providers

In alphabetical order (click to jump to each entry):

  1. A123 Systems
  2. BYD Auto (also in EV maker list)
  3. China Aviation Lithium Battery Technology
  4. Contemporary Amperex Technology Limited
  5. EVE Energy
  6. Gotion High-tech

Tesla (Nasdaq: TSLA)

  • Units shipped: 500,000 (2020)
  • Revenues in China: 43 billion yuan / $6.6 billion (2020)
  • Number of models: 4
  • Number of factories: 4
  • Number of employees: 70,757
  • Primary industry: Electric vehicle, battery energy storage
  • EV-related affiliates: Contemporary Amperex Technology

Headquartered in Palo Alto, California, the company rocked the first quarter of 2021 thanks to rising car sales in China, where a new Shanghai gigafactory began production in January 2020. With blessings from Beijing, Tesla is the only foreign company to own 100% of an EV factory in the country. Its reliance on China — both in terms of supply chains and Chinese consumer demand — is slated to grow over time.

Timeline:

BYD Auto (HKSE: 1211) (SZSE: 002594)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: 130,970 (2020)
  • Revenues: 153.5 billion yuan / $23.4 billion (2020)
  • Number of models: 5
  • Number of factories: 13
  • Number of employees: 229,154 (2020)
  • Primary industry: Electric vehicles
  • Primary industry of parent: IT, rechargeable batteries, handset electronics, energy storage, electric bikes, urban rail transit systems
  • EV-related affiliates: Toyota, Didi, FAW

BYD Auto, or Build Your Dreams (比亚迪 bǐyàdí), is the EV subsidiary of Chinese multinational BYD Company. Founded in 1995 with headquarters in Shenzhen and downtown Los Angeles, BYD began as a rechargeable battery business in the IT sector before branching into handset electronics, and then automobiles, including EVs. The company is now moving into other businesses, including renewable energy power plants, LEDs, and urban rail transit systems.

In the span of a decade, BYD became the largest Chinese battery manufacturer, capturing half the world’s mobile-phone battery market. Its EV unit was born in 2002 from an acquisition of Tsinchuan Automobile, then the sixth-largest car manufacturer in China by sales volume. Aside from its own EVs, BYD also supplies other EV manufacturers, including state-owned FAW Group.

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway owns 8% of BYD. In April 2020, BYD and Toyota Motors announced a joint partnership in a new company — BYD Toyota EV Technology — that will research and manufacture EVs for the Chinese market.

Timeline:

SAIC Motor (SHA: 600104)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: Number of EVs not available
  • Revenues: 742 billion yuan / $113 billion (2020)
  • Number of factories: N/A
  • Number of models: N/A
  • Number of employees: 147,738 (2019)
  • Primary industry: Gas-powered cars, commercial vehicles
  • EV-related affiliates: GM, Wuling, Volkswagen, Zhiji, Alibaba

SAIC Motor (上汽集团 shàngqì jítuán) is China’s biggest traditional automaker. Headquartered in Shanghai, with origins dating back to the 1940s, it has recently made a concerted transition from gas-powered cars to electric vehicles.

SAIC is a major presence in China’s electric vehicle market because of longstanding joint ventures with foreign automakers that have recently enjoyed success in the sector. They include SAIC-Volkswagen and SAIC-GM-Wuling. More recently, SAIC has also joined together with Alibaba to create Zhiji, a pure electric vehicle brand.

Timeline:

SAIC Volkswagen Automotive (SHA: 600104) (OTC: VWAGY)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped in China: N/A
  • Revenues: N/A
  • Number of factories: 1
  • Number of models: 3
  • Number of employees: 96,974 (2020)
  • Primary industry: Electric vehicles
  • Primary industry of parent(s): Gas-powered cars, commercial vehicles, autoparts
  • EV-related affiliates: SAIC, Volkswagen, Audi

SAIC Volkswagen, founded in 1984, is one of the oldest sino-foreign auto partnerships. Headquartered in Shanghai, it is owned 50% by Volkswagen and 50% by SAIC, China’s biggest traditional automaker. It sells cars under the Volkswagen and Skoda brands. SAIC Volkswagen now has three all-electric models: The ID.3 hatchback available in Europe, the ID.4 which is selling in the U.S., and now the ID.6. which is designed specifically for the Chinese market.

Timeline:

SAIC-GM-Wuling (SHA: 600104) (NYSE: GM) (HKG: 0305)

  • Units shipped: Number of EVs not available
  • Revenues: 3.5 billion yuan / $533.53 million (2020)
  • Number of factories: 12
  • Number of models: 3
  • Number of employees: 147,738 (2019)
  • Primary industry: Electric vehicles
  • Primary industry of parent(s): Gas-powered cars, commercial vehicles, autoparts
  • EV-related affiliates: SAIC, GM, Wuling

SAIC-GM-Wuling (上汽通用五菱 shàngqì tōngyòng wǔlíng) is a joint venture between SAIC Motor Corp, Wuling Motors, and General Motors. The joint venture began in 2002 as a highly successful maker of commercial minivans. Its first EV — a micro-EV called the Wuling Hongguang Mini EV — outsold the Tesla 3 nearly two-to-one in February 2021. It is priced at $4,162 to $5,607, making it China’s cheapest EV. Wuling is a state-backed automaker, which, along with cars, makes trucks, buses, and autoparts.

Parent company SAIC has also partnered with Alibaba (see entry list for Zhiji) and Volkswagen (SAIC-Volkswagen) to make smart EVs.

Timeline:

NIO (NYSE: NIO)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: 43,728 (2020)
  • Revenues: 16.25 billion yuan / $2.5 billion (2020)
  • Number of models: 5
  • Number of factories: 1
  • Number of employees: 7,000+ (2020)
  • Primary industry: Electric vehicles
  • EV-related affiliates: Tencent, Baidu

NIO (蔚来 wèilái) is a Chinese manufacturer of smart EVs. Founded in November 2014 and headquartered in Shanghai, the company was launched by CEO William Li (李斌 Lǐ Bīn), the founder of BitAuto (NYSE: BITA), with backing from several other tech executives, most notably the CEO of JD.com (NASDAQ: JD). The company’s investors include Tencent, Baidu, Sequoia, and Warburg Pincus.

NIO’s main products include an electric formula race car along with its ES8, ES6, and EC6 models for the general public. The company recently launched its ET7 model, its first smart electric sedan. In 2018, NIO filed for an initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange, raising $1.8 billion. Its advanced driver assistance system, known as NIO Pilot, is a direct competitor with Tesla’s Autopilot. The startup has yet to turn a profit.

NIO has been through some rough times. See: Will NIO survive long enough to reap China’s electric car rewards?

Timeline:

Xpeng (NYSE: XPEV)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: 27,041 (2020)
  • Revenues: $895.7 million (2020)
  • Number of models: 3
  • Number of factories: 1
  • Number of employees: 3,676 (2020)
  • Primary industry: Electric vehicles
  • EV-related affiliates: Alibaba, JD, Xiaomi

Smart EV maker Xpeng (小鹏 xiǎopéng) was founded in August 2014 by former Alibaba executive and namesake Hé Xiǎopéng 何小鹏. The company is headquartered in Guangzhou with an office in Mountain View, California. The senior executive team consists of former employees of Guangzhou Auto, a top Chinese manufacturer, Ford, BMW, and Tesla.

In addition to Alibaba, which currently owns a 14% stake in the startup, Xpeng has drawn its employees from many well-known tech giants, including Xiaomi, Tencent, Samsung, and Huawei. Their expertise has helped Xpeng become competitive in smart car technologies.

On November 13, 2019, the startup completed a $400 million Series C financing round with investors including Xiaomi and the company founder, He. On April 13, 2021, the company announced that it was considering making its own semiconductors. Currently, for its P5 model, debuting in the Shanghai Auto Show on April 21, the company buys chips from Nvidia for autonomous driving and from Qualcomm for its in-car digital cockpit.

Timeline:

Li Auto (NASDAQ: LI)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: 14,464 (2020)
  • Revenues: $1.45 billion
  • Number of models: 1
  • Number of factories: 1
  • Number of employees: 2,628 (2019)
  • Primary industry: Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles
  • EV-related affiliates: Meituan, ByteDance

Li Auto (理想 lǐxiǎng) is a smart EV manufacturer founded in 2015 and headquartered in Beijing. The company also goes by its older name, CHJ Automotive (车和家汽车). The six-year-old startup is backed by Meituan, one of China’s largest ecommerce and consumer services apps, and ByteDance, the owner of short-video app TikTok.

Unlike most other EV makers, Li Auto specializes in plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs), which can be powered by either gasoline or electricity. The company began selling its first model in 2019. In June 2019, the company received $300 million in funding from Meituan CEO Wáng Xìng 王兴 and $30 million from ByteDance. On July 30, 2020, Li Auto raised $1.1 billion in an initial public offering on the Nasdaq, valuing it at $10 billion.

Timeline:

WM Motor Technology

  • Units shipped: 22,495 (2020)
  • Revenues: $78 million yuan / $12 million
  • Number of factories: 1
  • Number of models: 3
  • Number of employees: 2,500
  • Primary industry: Electric vehicles
  • EV-related affiliates: Baidu, Tencent, SAIC

WM Motor Technology (威马 wēimǎ) is a Shanghai-based intelligent EV company selling under the Weltmeister brand.

Founded in 2015, it launched its first production car, the EX5, in May 2018 and shipped its first fully electric vehicle in September of the same year. WM’s investors include Chinese technology giants Baidu and Tencent, along with Sequoia Capital and government-backed investment funds. WM Motor maintains R&D facilities in China, Germany, and the U.S.

WM Motor’s founder, Freeman Shen (沈晖 Shěn Huī), is a former executive at Geely and the chairman of Geely-owned Volvo’s China operations. Prior to WM, Shen co-founded and was the CEO of Pateo Group, a vehicle connectivity and telematics company.

Timeline:

Geely (SEHK: 175)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: Number of EVs not available
  • Revenues: 5.53 billion yuan / $850 million (2020)
  • Number of factories: 2
  • Number of models: 5
  • Primary industry: Gas-powered vehicles, electrics vehicles
  • EV-related affiliates: Baidu, London Taxi Company, JD.com

Geely (吉利 jílì), or Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, is one of China’s largest traditional automakers, but it has recently begun making the switch from gas-powered cars to EVs.

The company is privately owned by Chinese billionaire Lǐ Shūfú 李书福. Geely has global operations spanning the automotive value chain, from research, development, and design to production, sales, and service. Apart from cars, Geely also has businesses in education, motorsports, and tourism. Geely acquired the Volvo brand from Ford in 2010.

Geely has a number of EV-related subsidiaries. These include Volvo, Geometry, Lynk & Co, and Zeekr, all of which featured EVs during the Shanghai Auto Show in April 2021. It also manufactures premium electric race cars under its Sino-Swedish brand, Polestar. Geely’s electric vehicle ambitions are also present in its unusual acquisition of the iconic London Taxi Company in 2013. In 2017, Geely changed the taxi maker’s name to the London Electric Vehicle Company, and opened an EV plant in Antsy, Coventry, to manufacture extended-range EV taxis. Geely’s main EV assembly plant is in Hangzhou, Zhejiang.

Timeline:

Byton (formerly Future Mobility)

  • Units shipped: N/A
  • Revenues: N/A
  • Number of factories: 1
  • Number of models: 2
  • Primary industry: Electric vehicles
  • EV-related affiliates: Tencent, Foxconn, FAW, Nanjing Zhixing

Byton (拜腾 bàiténg), formerly Future Mobility, is an EV startup headquartered in Nanjing. Founded in 2015, it spun off from a joint venture between internet giant Tencent, electronics manufacturer Foxconn, and luxury-car dealer Harmony New Energy Auto, and was co-founded by former BMW and Nissan executives. The EV startup had planned to sell premium all-electric, fully autonomous cars, but temporarily halted operations in July 2020 due to financial problems exacerbated by COVID-19.

  • In September 2020, Nanjing Zhixing New Energy Automobile Technology (南京知行新能源技术) became the new owner of the brand.
  • Chinese automaker FAW, which has its own separate EV venture, now holds a 23% stake in the startup.
  • In January 2021, Taiwan’s Foxconn announced it would take a $200 million stake in the company.

Byton currently has two EVs — the M-Byte and K-Byte — and hopes to start mass-producing its M-Byte vehicle by the first quarter of 2022.

Timeline:

Enovate

  • Units shipped: N/A
  • Revenues: N/A
  • Number of factories: 1
  • Number of models: 2
  • Primary industry: Electric vehicles
  • Primary industry of parent: Technology, software, transportation

Enovate (天际 tiānjì) is an electric car company founded in 2015 under Zhejiang Dianka Automobile Technology (浙江电咖汽车). Zhejiang Dianka provides a range of technology and software services along with the manufacturing of other electrical and transportation components.

Enovate has launched two models: the Dearcc EV10 and Enovate ME7. It intends to create intelligent vehicles through its proprietary system known as ME Pilot.

Timeline:

Zhiji (SAIC-Alibaba)

  • Units shipped: N/A
  • Revenues: N/A
  • Number of factories: 1
  • Number of models: 2
  • Primary industry: Electric vehicles
  • EV-related affiliates: SAIC, Alibaba

Zhiji Auto (智己 zhìjǐ) was founded in December 2020 as a joint venture between China’s largest automaker, SAIC, and internet titan Alibaba. The venture was spun off from a $1 billion fund in November 2020 sponsored by SAIC, Zhangjiang High-Tech (张江高科), and Hengxu Capital (恒旭资本), which intended to work with Alibaba on “high-end smart electric vehicle projects.” On January 13, 2021, Zhiji debuted its first EV model, “IM-Zhiji.” The company expects to make its first deliveries in 2022.

Timeline:

Xiaomi (HKG: 0810)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: N/A
  • Revenue: $37.63 billion (2020)
  • Number of factories: N/A
  • Number of models: N/A
  • Number of employees: 22,074 (2020)
  • Primary industry: Consumer electronics, consumer hardware
  • EV-related affiliates: Xpeng

Xiaomi (小米 xiǎomǐ) is a consumer electronics giant sometimes compared with Apple because of its loyal customer base and production of smartphones, mobile apps, laptops, and home appliances.

Founded in 2010 with headquarters in Beijing, the tech giant is the world’s third-largest smartphone maker behind Samsung and Huawei, but surpassing Apple. As of 2018, Xiaomi has a presence in more than 80 countries and regions worldwide. On July 9, 2018, Xiaomi successfully listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in the largest tech IPO in Hong Kong.

Xiaomi has been active as an investor in the EV space, backing the Chinese smart EV upstart Xpeng. But on March 30, 2021, Xiaomi announced its intention to enter the EV market on its own terms, spinning off a wholly owned subsidiary led by the CEO, Léi Jūn 雷军. It plans to invest $10 billion into the project over 10 years. Lei called the decision “the final major entrepreneurial project of his life” and suggested that the company’s recent change of logo was in response to the new venture.

Timeline:

Dongfeng Motor Corporation (SEHK: 0489)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: Number of EVs not available
  • Revenues: 834 billion yuan / $128 billion (2020)
  • Number of factories: 1
  • Number of models: 3
  • Number of employees: 136,550 (2020)
  • Primary industry: Gas-powered cars, trucks, buses, military vehicles, autoparts
  • EV-related affiliates: Renault-Nissan, CATL, Huawei, Tencent

Dongfeng Motor Corporation (东风 dōngfēng) is a Chinese state-owned automaker headquartered in Wuhan. Founded in 2001, it is one of the “Big Four” Chinese automakers alongside SAIC, FAW, and Changan Automobile, and makes trucks, buses, and passenger cars as well as doing auto financing and related businesses. Dongfeng has a total of 13 subsidiaries under its brand, among them joint ventures with many foreign automakers such as Honda, Renault, Nissan, and Peugeot-Citroën.

Dongfeng currently has one pure electric sub-brand called Skio, which offers three models.

Timeline:

Chang’an Automobile (SHE: 000625)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: Number of EVs not available
  • Revenues: 68.1 billion yuan / $9.9 billion (2019)
  • Number of factories: N/A
  • Number of models: 12
  • Number of employees: 80,000 (2020)
  • Primary industry: Gas-powered cars, microvans, commercial vans, light trucks
  • EV-related affiliates: Baidu, Huawei, CATL

Chang’an Automobile (长安 cháng’ān) is a Chinese state-owned automaker headquartered in Chongqing and a subsidiary of Chang’an Automobile Group. Founded in 1862, it is one of the “Big Four” Chinese automakers alongside SAIC, FAW, and Dongfeng. As a longtime player in China’s auto industry, Chang’an has a global footprint with 16 global production bases, 35 vehicle and engine plants, and 10 key overseas markets. It has been selected twice in CCTV’s “National Brand Project,” which bestows “national brand” status on certain brands.

Like other state-owned automakers, Chang’an has joint ventures with Western and Japanese counterparts, specifically Ford and Mazda. The company began exploring the smart EV space in 2016, announcing a formal partnership with Baidu in 2017. Last year, Chang’an also announced plans to work with Huawei on smart car tech. In August 2020, Chang’an released the first purely electric vehicle, a compact SUV, under its Oshan brand, the Oshan X7 EV.

Timeline:

Guangzhou Automobile Group (SEHK: 2238)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: 6,876
  • Revenues: 59.1 billion yuan / $9.1 billion (2020)
  • Number of factories: 2
  • Number of models: 7
  • Number of employees: 93,854 (2019)
  • Primary industry: Gas-powered cars, commercial vehicles, sports vehicles, motorcycles, auto parts
  • EV-related affiliates: SAIC, Huawei, CATL

Guangzhou Automobile Group (GAC) is a Chinese automaker owned by the Guangzhou municipal government. In size, it usually ranks outside China’s “Big Four” automakers FAW, Dongfeng, Chang’an, and SAIC Motor. Established in 1997 with headquarters in Guangzhou, GAC is listed on the Hong Kong and Shanghai stock exchanges.

Its electric arm, known as Guangzhou New Energy Automobile, sells cars under the Aion brand.

Like other state-owned enterprises, GAC has established joint ventures with several foreign automakers, including Honda, Toyota, Mitsubishi, Isuzu, and Fiat Chrysler. Honda and Toyota cars account for about 70% of GAC’s total sales. GAC also sells its own brand of cars, the most popular known as Trumpchi.

Timeline:

Chery Automobile

  • Units shipped: N/A
  • Revenues: $5.6 billion worldwide (2020)
  • Number of factories: 2
  • Number of models: 10
  • Number of employees: 16,721 (2020)
  • Primary industry: Gas-powered cars, commercial vehicles, auto parts
  • EV-related affiliates: N/A

Chery Automobile (奇瑞 qíruì) is a state-owned automaker headquartered in Anhui. Founded in 1997, Chery primarily manufactures gas-powered cars, minivans, and SUVs. However, it was the second automaker in China, behind BYD, to transition to electric vehicles, churning out its first model in the early 2000s. It began investing heavily in the industry by 2011 and now has 10 pure electric models. Chery is also China’s top auto exporter and, unlike its other state-owned counterparts, it does not have joint ventures with any established western automakers.

Timeline:

FAW Group (SHE: 000800)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: 550,869 (2021)
  • Revenues: 620 billion yuan / $89.2 billion (2019)
  • Number of factories: 1
  • Number of models: 3
  • Number of employees: 6,891
  • Primary industry of parent(s): Gas-powered cars, buses, trucks, auto parts
  • EV-related affiliates: BYD

FAW, or First Automotive Works (第一汽车集团 dìyī qìchē jítuán), is a state-owned enterprise headquartered in Changchun, Jilin, and one of the “Big Four” Chinese automakers. Its oldest marque is luxury car brand Hóngqí (红旗), founded in 1958. Cars branded Hongqi, which means “red flag,” were originally only for high-ranking Chinese Communist Party officials including Máo Zédōng 毛泽东. Hongqi now has three all-electric models: The E-HS3, the E-HS9, and the E-QM5. FAW announced that 91,900 units of Hongqi were shipped in the first 4 months of 2021, a 132% spike from last year.

Timeline:

FAW-Volkswagen Automobile (SHE: 000800)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: N/A
  • Revenues: 620 billion yuan / $89.2 billion (2019)
  • Number of factories: 5
  • Number of models: 9
  • Number of employees: 100,000 (2019)
  • Primary industry of parent(s): Gas-powered cars, buses, trucks, auto parts
  • EV-related affiliates: FAW, Volkswagen, Audi

FAW-Volkswagen Automobile is a joint venture between Chinese automaker FAW Group and German automaker Volkswagen Group. Audi, which is wholly owned by Volkswagen, also has a 10% stake in the venture. Established in 1991, the joint venture began making passenger cars under the Volkswagen and Audi brands. In 2019, the company launched two electric sedans, “e-Bora” and “e-Golf.”

Timeline:

Evergrande (SEHK: 3333)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: N/A
  • Revenues: 723.5 billion yuan / $110 million
  • Number of factories: 3
  • Number of models: 6
  • Primary industry: Electric vehicles
  • Primary industry of parent: Real estate
  • EV-related affiliates: Tencent

Evergrande Health was a subsidiary of Evergrande, one of China’s largest property developers, but probably also one of the world’s most indebted companies. In 2020, the unit was rebranded as Evergrande New Energy Vehicles (恒大新能源汽车), after announcing an investment of about $7 billion in EVs in November 2019.

With three production facilities in Nansha, Guangzhou, and Shanghai, Evergrande launched its first concept model under the brand Hengchi (恒驰) in 2020 and has showcased prototypes for nine models since August 2020. The subsidiary has yet to mass-produce any of them, however.

Timeline:

BAIC Motor (SEHK: 1958)

EDGE profile

  • Units shipped: N/A
  • Revenue: 11.7 billion yuan / $1.8 billion (2016)
  • Number of factories: 3
  • Number of models: 20
  • Number of employees: 20,720
  • Primary industry: Gas-powered cars
  • Primary industry of parent: Gas-powered cars, trucks, military vehicles, buses, agriculture equipment
  • EV-related affiliates: Huawei, Didi, Daimler, BJEV, CATL, Baidu

BAIC Motor (北京汽车 běijīng qìchē) is a state-owned enterprise and subsidiary of BAIC Group, which is itself a part of the Beijing Municipal Government.

Incorporated in 2010, it became a listed company in 2014. As of 2016, it holds a 50% stake in the China operations of Hyundai and Mercedes-Benz. It is one of the largest car manufacturers in China. In 2017, the company partnered up with German carmaker Daimler and spun off a subsidiary called Beijing Electric Vehicle (BJEV). BJEV’s primary car brand is called Arcfox, which now has four models, one of which is powered by Huawei’s intelligent vehicle software “Huawei Inside.”

In 2019, BJEV began a joint venture with ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing to explore projects related to EVs.

Timeline:

Zotye (SHE: 000980)

  • Units Shipped: 145,000 (2019)
  • Revenue in China: 1.298 billion yuan (2020)
  • Number of Factories: 5
  • Number of Models: 5
  • Number of Employees: 2,143 (2020)
  • Primary Industry: Gas-powered and electric vehicles
  • EV-Related Affiliates: Tech New Group (controlling shareholder), Ford (2017-2021), Bak Power

Headquartered in Yongkang, Zhejiang and known for producing luxury look-alikes, Zotye Automobile Co. (众泰汽车 zhòngtài qìchē) has been in financial freefall over the last several years. After turning a decent $125 million profit in 2018, Zotye suffered a $2 billion net loss in 2019, compounded by a $1-1.4 billion net loss in 2020 with sales down 93.5% from 2017, which the company has attributed to a downturn in sales in the auto industry (exacerbated by the pandemic) and intensive R&D investment in a new line of electric vehicles. Such a tumble has placed Zotye on the verge of being delisted from the Shenzhen Stock Exchange and has caused its controlling shareholder, Tech New Group, to declare bankruptcy and pursue Chapter 11 reorganization.

Timeline:

Aiways

  • Units Shipped: 2500 (2020)
  • Revenue in China: 375 million yuan (2020)
  • Number of Factories: 1
  • Number of Models: 3
  • Number of Employees: 1600
  • Primary Industry: Electric vehicles
  • EV-Related Affiliates: Tencent, Didi Chuxing, Jiangling Motors Group, Changan Automobile

Founded in Shanghai in 2017 by Gary Gu 谷峰 and former Volvo China CEO Samuel Fu 付强, Aiways Automobile (“Aiways”) is a pure EV manufacturer with big ambitions and hefty backers (over 7 billion yuan or $1.1 billion). After debuting its first model in 2019, Aiways is expecting to scale up its year-on-year sales tenfold in 2021 with 10,000 projected exports this year. With a current production capacity of 150,000 units which can ultimately be ramped up to 300,000 units, Aiways has plenty of room to run.

Aiways is also the first Chinese start-up to introduce an EV on the European market. With orders going out to Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, France, and Israel, Aiways is finding success throughout the continent as well as back home. Aiways President Fu Qiang has confirmed reports that it is seeking to go public in the second half of 2021 on the Shanghai STAR market, with what appears to be a valuation of around $2 billion.

Timeline:

Great Wall Motors (SEHK: 2333; SHA: 601633)

EDGE profile

Founded in 1984 and headquartered in Baoding, Hebei Province, Great Wall Motors Co., Ltd. (长城汽车 chángchéng qìchē) is China’s largest SUV manufacturer with truly global presence. After spending a decade on green energy R&D, Great Wall Motors launched the first model of its electric vehicle sub-brand, ORA, in August 2018 and has since marketed the subsequent model, the ORA R1, as the world’s cheapest electric vehicle coming in at under 60,000 yuan ($9,000). In the meantime, Great Wall Motors has announced EV partnerships with BMW and Xiaomi, as well as a large EV foray in Thailand, and is reportedly planning the launch of a standalone EV brand, internally coded as the “SL Project.”

Timeline:

Human Horizons

  • Units Shipped: N/A
  • Revenue in China: N/A
  • Number of Factories: 1 (Yancheng, Jiangsu Province)
  • Number of Models: 4
  • Number of Employees: 1000+ (as of April 2020)
  • Primary Industry: Electric vehicles, autonomous driving, artificial intelligence
  • EV-Related Affiliates: DYK, Qualcomm, JOYNEXT, Quectel, Meridian Auto, Microsoft China, Bosch Group, State Grid, China Southern Power Grid, TELD

Founded in 2017 by former Shanghai General Motors President Dīng Lěi 丁磊, Human Horizons (华人运通 huárén yùntōng) began shipping its electric, 5G-equipped “HiPhi” models on May 8, 2021. With 80 stores open across China (projected to be 120 by the end of 2021) and partnerships with the state electrical grid to have 150,000 charging stations across 300 cities, Human Horizons is gearing up for a breakaway. What remains to be seen is whether the company’s HiPhi series’ hefty price tag ($90,000 – $125,000) can attract customers. Complete with leather interiors and a seat massage, HiPhi cars are not short on bells and whistles, and its nearly entirely automated production and quality control process should give the series some added durability points in consumers’ minds.

Beyond electric vehicles, Human Horizons is planning to operate smart cities, with collective transportation and traffic management intelligence systems and integrated technological architecture. A prototype is already being developed in Shanghai. Despite all the up-front investment, however, details on Human Horizons’ funding are scant.

Timeline:

Singulato

  • Units Shipped: No sales information available
  • Revenue in China: N/A
  • Number of Factories: 1 (Tongling, Anhui Province) and 1 planned in Suzhou, Jiangsu Province
  • Number of Models: 2
  • Number of Employees: 140
  • Primary Industry: Electric Vehicles
  • EV-Related Affiliates: Toyota and BAIC

Singulato Motors, or Zhiche Youxing Technology Co., Ltd. (智车优行科技 zhìchē yōuxíng kējì), was founded in December 2014 as an electric vehicle company and initially showed a lot of promise, garnering over 18 billion yuan ($2.8 billion) in funding over 11 fundraising rounds. After announcing construction on a mass-production plant in 2016 in Tongling and another large plant in Suzhou in 2018, and releasing an EV prototype, the iS6, in May 2018 at the Beijing Motor Show, Singulato Motors has faltered in actually completing the production process and getting cars to consumers. For several years, it fell out of the public eye almost entirely. Seemingly embroiled in multiple contract disputes and unable to comply with several judicial verdicts against the company, Singulato was recently in the news again in June 2021 when Chinese authorities banned Singulato founder Shěn Hǎiyín 沈海寅 from “high-level consumption.” What was once a promising EV start-up seems, at least for the time being, to be on its last legs.

Timeline:

Hozon Auto

  • Units Shipped: 16,439 (2020); 11,458 (Jan-Apr 2021)
  • Revenue in China: Approx. $301 million
  • Number of Factories: 2 (Tongxiang, Zhejiang and Yichun, Jiangxi)
  • Number of Models: 3
  • Number of Employees: 837
  • Primary Industry: Electric vehicles
  • EV-Related Affiliates: Harmony Auto, CATL, Qihoo 360

Established in October 2014 with registered capital of $98 million and total investment of over $1.1 billion, Hozon Auto (合众汽车 hézhòng qìchē) is an EV start-up headquartered in Shanghai, China. Looking towards the environmentally-conscious budget customer, Hozon launched its first EV, the Neta N01, in 2018 at a near industry-low price of 10,000. With plans to increase the number of direct-sale stores to 60 by the end of 2021, Hozon is ramping up production toward a goal of 50,000 units in 2021. Despite the crowded EV market, Hozon has attracted a good chunk of capital with close to $1.5 billion raised, and rising sales have it primed to list on Shanghai’s STAR market by the end of 2021.

Timeline:

Brilliance Auto

EDGE profile

  • Units Shipped: 25.8 million (2019)
  • Revenue in China: $600 million (2019)
  • Number of Factories: 2 (Shenyang)
  • Number of Models: 6
  • Number of Employees: ~5,610
  • Primary Industry: Electric vehicles
  • EV-Related Affiliates: BMW

Brilliance China is one of the leading automotive manufacturers in China through its subsidiaries, associated companies and joint ventures. During 2009, the Group disposed of its loss-making Zhonghua sedan business. Starting from January 2010, the Group’s operating segments are divided primarily into the manufacture and sale of minibuses and automotive components. Its commercial vehicle brands include “JinBei” and “Granse” minibuses as well as “Huasong” premium MPVs.

In 2003, Brilliance established a joint venture with BMW, namely BMW Brilliance Automotive Ltd. (“BBA”), to produce BMW 3-series and 5-series sedans in China. BBA also commenced production and sale of BMW SUVs in early 2012. In November 2013, BBA launched ZINORO 1E, its first new energy vehicle, in the PRC. At the end of 2014, the BMW joint venture introduced the very first China-produced BMW new energy vehicle, the 5-series long-wheelbase plug-in hybrid model, in the PRC. The new generation X3 sport activity vehicle (“SAV”), which is the sixth BMW model that is locally produced by BBA, underwent market launch in June 2018. In addition to the X3, BBA also introduced in March 2018 the plugin hybrid version of the new 5-series. BBA will be introducing new models of both internal combustion engine (“ICE”) and new energy vehicle (“NEV”) BMW vehicles into the Chinese market over the next few years. The iX3, which is the electrified version of the X3 model, commenced production in China in 2020 for both local sales and exports to the rest of the world.

Timeline:

Avatr Technology

  • Units Shipped: N/A
  • Revenue in China: N/A
  • Number of Factories: 1
  • Number of Models: 1
  • Number of Employees: N/A
  • Primary Industry: Electric vehicles
  • EV-Related Affiliates: Chang’an Automobile, CATL, Huawei, NIO

Avatr Technology (阿维塔 āwéitǎ) is the subsidiary of Chongqing Chang’an Automobile. It was established in 2018 as Chang’an NIO, a joint venture between Changan and NIO but became rebranded as Avatr after it began independent operations. Avatr is backed by big players: the battery giant CATL is the second largest shareholder of Avatr and Huawei is also a stakeholder. Avatr runs on Huawei software, the smart electric vehicle platform (CHN), and on CATL’s batteries. In August 2021, Avatr went public on the Chongqing Assets Equity Exchange and in November, the brand secured a $378 million investment from CATL. The brand’s first car Avatr 11 is an all-electric medium-sized SUV coupe and the company plans to unveil four new models in the coming five years.

Timeline:

Business in the morning.

A lot happens in China’s economy when you’re sleeping. Luckily there’s ChinaEdge – a free newsletter you can read in less than 2 minutes, delivered at 9am ET daily.

 
 


Software and service providers


 
 

Alibaba (NYSE: BABA) (SEHK: 9988)

EDGE profile

  • Revenues: $72 billion (2020)
  • Number of employees: 117,600
  • Primary industry: Ecommerce, internet, technology
  • EV-related affiliations: SAIC, Xpeng

Alibaba (阿里巴巴 ālǐ bābā) is one of the world’s largest ecommerce companies. Founded in 1999 in Zhejiang, it hosts the largest B2B (Alibaba.com), C2C (Taobao), and B2C (Tmall) marketplaces in the world.

The company has a diverse set of other businesses, including artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and fintech. In January 2021, Alibaba set up an EV joint venture called Zhiji with China’s biggest automaker, SAIC Motors. The joint venture will launch mass production of two EVs with deliveries beginning in the first quarter of the year. One of Alibaba’s former executives, Hé Xiǎopéng (何小鹏), went on to found Xpeng.

Timeline:

Baidu (NASDAQ: BIDU)

EDGE profile

  • Revenues: $16.4 billion (2020)
  • Number of employees: 45,887
  • Primary industry: Internet-related services, technology, AI
  • EV-related affiliations: Geely, NIO, WM Motors

Baidu (百度 bǎidù) is one of the world’s largest internet and technology companies. The company, headquartered in Beijing, offers a variety of services, including a search engine, which is the second largest in the world, mapping services, an online encyclopedia, cloud storage, and artificial intelligence.

Baidu has been at the forefront of the push toward autonomous driving. In 2017, Baidu launched the Apollo project (阿波龙 ābōlóng), a self-driving vehicle platform that offers “a complete open automatic driving ecosystem” for players in the automotive industry. In the same year, Baidu also launched a $1.5 billion fund dedicated to investing in as many as 100 autonomous driving projects. It has invested in EV makers such as NIO and WM Motors. In July 2018, Baidu commenced mass production of unmanned Apollo buses.

Timeline:

ByteDance

EDGE profile

  • Revenues: $37 billion (2020)
  • Number of employees: 60,000 (2020)
  • Primary industry: Internet, social network, video sharing
  • EV-related affiliations: QCraft, Li Auto

ByteDance (字节跳动 zìjié tiàodòng) is an internet technology company known for its video-sharing platforms TikTok and Douyin, and Toutiao (“Headlines”), a popular news recommendation app.

In 2019, ByteDance was named as an investor in the EV maker Li Auto during the latter’s prospectus for a U.S. initial public offering. In March 2021, ByteDance announced an investment in local autonomous driving startup QCraft, the first sign of its foray into smart EVs. ByteDance is now preparing plans to list Douyin in New York or Hong Kong.

Timeline:

  • July 2, 2019 — ByteDance invests $30 million in the EV maker Li Auto.
  • March 5, 2021 — ByteDance announced that it is investing in local autonomous driving startup QCraft.
  • March 31, 2021 — ByteDance considers listing Douyin, its subsidiary and the Chinese counterpart of TikTok, in New York or Hong Kong.

Didi Chuxing

EDGE profile

  • Revenue: 6.5 billion yuan / $1 billion (2020)
  • Number of employees: 11,407 (2019)
  • Primary industry: Ride hailing, delivery services
  • EV-related affiliations: BYD, BJEV, BAIC, Volvo, Ford, Renault, Geely

Didi Chuxing (滴滴出行 dīdī chūxíng) is China’s largest ride-hailing platform with services similar to Uber. Headquartered in Beijing, its platform provides services such as taxi hailing, ride sharing, and bike sharing.

Since late 2010, Didi has become active in the EV market collaborating with Chinese automakers such as BAIC and BYD, as well as foreign automakers Ford and Renault.

Didi has its own autonomous driving arm called Didi Autopilot, which works on the technology behind self-driving cabs. In April 2021, the ride-hailing giant began making its own EVs. In the same week, it also filed for an initial public offering that could raise as much as $100 billion.

Timeline:

DJI

EDGE profile

  • Revenue: $2.83 billion (2018)
  • Number of employees: 14,000 (2018)
  • Primary industry: Drones and other uncrewed aerial vehicles, robotics, AI
  • EV-related affiliations: BYD, BJEV, BAIC

DJI, or Dajiang Innovations (大疆创新 dàjiāng chuàngxīn), is the world’s biggest consumer drone company, with 70% of global market share. Headquartered in Shenzhen, the 15-year-old company makes remote controlled quadcopters and commercial drones for aerial photography, agriculture, forestry, and security.

DJI announced in April 2021 that it would exhibit its intelligent driving systems at the Shanghai Auto Show. It simultaneously revealed DJI Automotive as a separate division within the company.

Timeline:

Foxconn

The largest electronics contract manufacturer in the world and headquartered in Taipei, Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd. (鴻海科技集團, Hónghǎi kējì jítuán; TPE:2354), better known as Foxconn, is perhaps best known as Apple’s primary manufacturer, though it also partners with other giants like Amazon, Xiaomi, and Sony. As the electronics and auto industries have begun to meld together, Foxconn has spotted an opportunity to leverage its economies of scale and electronics expertise to spearhead this global trend, setting up the MIH alliance in 2020 which is an open platform for EV collaboration that has already attracted over 1200 companies from around the world.

Over the past couple years, Foxconn has signed a flurry of partnerships with EV manufacturers in and outside of China, and there are likely many more to come. A number of analysts theorize that much of Foxconn’s EV push is a means of securing the manufacturing position in Apple’s future EV business. With plans to set up factories in China and North America, Foxconn aims to begin mass-producing EVs by 2023 and to capture 10% of the global market by 2025.

Timeline:

Huawei

EDGE profile

  • Revenue: 888 billion yuan / $136.7 billion
  • Number of employees: 197,000 (2020)
  • Primary industry: Consumer electronics, telecommunications
  • EV-related affiliations: BAIC, Chang’an Automobile, Guangzhou Automobile

Founded in 1987 and headquartered in Shenzhen, Huawei (华为 huáwéi) is a world-leading provider of information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure and smart devices. But after the U.S. blacklisted the firm and throttled its supply of semiconductors, Huawei has been looking for new growth areas.

Huawei has said it will not manufacture EVs, but it has invested $1 billion in EV software. Unlike its main competitor Xiaomi, Huawei will partner up with other automakers and provide the intelligent systems behind their EVs. The company has already announced partnerships with BAIC Group, Changan Automobile, and Guangzhou Automobile. Its first Huawei-powered self-driving vehicle, the Arcfox Polar Fox Alpha S, debuted with BAIC at the Shanghai Auto Show.

Timeline:

JD (Nasdaq: JD) (SEHK: 9618)

EDGE profile

  • Revenues: $82 billion (2019)
  • Number of employees: 227,730 (2019)
  • Primary industry: Ecommerce, drones, robotics, AI
  • EV-related affiliations: Xpeng, NIO, Geely

JD.com (京东 jīngdōng) is China’s second-largest ecommerce company behind Alibaba. Headquartered in Beijing, the Fortune 500 company has ventured into high-tech robotics and AI delivery.

JD has the largest drone delivery infrastructure in the world, and has begun testing robotic delivery services and driverless delivery through autonomous trucks. JD has informal affiliations with NIO through its CEO, Liú Qiángdōng 刘强东, one of NIO’s early founders.

In 2018, JD established an EV service division known as JD Service Plus to utilize its delivery and logistics infrastructure to serve the EV market. In September 2020, JD signed a partnership with Xpeng, signing those services to the EV maker.

Timeline:

Meituan (SEHK: 3690)

EDGE profile

  • Revenue: $13.7 billion (2019)
  • Number of employees: 46,662 (2018)
  • Primary industry: Internet, retail
  • EV-related affiliations: Li Auto

Meituan (美团 měituán) is an internet company that provides online retail services, including entertainment, dining, food and grocery delivery, and travel. Headquartered in Beijing, it was founded by Wáng Xìng 王兴 in 2010.

In June 2019, Wang Xing led an investment round of around $500 million in hybrid electric car maker Li Auto.

Timeline:

  • June 2019 — Meituan’s founder, Wang Xing, led an investment round (in Chinese) of up to $500 million in hybrid electric car maker Li Auto.

Qihoo 360 Security Technologies (SHA: 601360)

EDGE profile

Qihoo 360 (奇虎360, qíhǔ sānliùlíng) is an internet security company founded by tech entrepreneur Zhōu Hóngyī 周鸿祎 in June 2005 and is currently headquartered in Beijing. Currently the largest supplier of internet and mobile security products in China, Qihoo has recently been considering translating its security expertise to the EV market, which is otherwise vulnerable to deadly cyberattacks. With the ability to manufacture intelligent transport safety and intelligent connected security solutions software, Qihoo has a valuable role to play in the EV market. After dipping its foot in the water in 2017 on a jointly-developed secure EV with WM Motors, Qihoo recently dove headfirst into the market when it announced a partnership with EV startup Hozon Auto in May 2021, leading a financing round that brought in 3 billion yuan for Hozon. Only weeks later it was announced that Qihoo had started hiring auto industry talent.

Timeline:

Tencent (SEHK: 700)

EDGE profile

  • Revenues: $74 billion (2020)
  • Number of employees: 85,858 (2020)
  • Primary industry: Internet, social media, AI, video games
  • EV-related affiliations: Evergrande, NIO, WM Motors, Byton

Based in Shenzhen, Tencent (腾讯 téngxùn) is one of the world’s largest technology companies, involved in internet-related services, including entertainment (gaming and music), social media, artificial intelligence, banking, and payment systems.

In 2016, Tencent, together with electronics manufacturer Foxconn and luxury car dealer Harmony New Energy Auto, founded Future Mobility (now known as Byton), a pure all-electric vehicle startup.

Tencent has created its own AI self-driving program, a competitor to Baidu’s Apollo Project, recruiting numerous industry players. In addition to Byton, Tencent has backed a number of EV makers, including NIO and WM Motors. In 2020, it announced a partnership with Evergrande to develop smart vehicle operating systems.

Timeline:

  • 2016 — Tencent, together with electronics manufacturer Foxconn and luxury car dealer Harmony New Energy Auto, founded Future Mobility (now known as Byton), a pure all-electric vehicle startup.
  • March 2017 — Tesla announced Tencent had purchased a 5% stake in Tesla for $1.78 billion.
  • March 2020 — Tencent announces partnership with Evergrande to develop smart vehicle operating systems.

Business in the morning.

A lot happens in China’s economy when you’re sleeping. Luckily there’s ChinaEdge – a free newsletter you can read in less than 2 minutes, delivered at 9am ET daily.

 
 


Battery providers


 
 

A123 Systems

  • Revenues: $500 million
  • Number of employees: 3000 (2013)
  • Primary industry: battery production, energy storage
  • EV-related affiliates: Volkswagen

A123 Systems is a subsidiary of Wanxiang Group Holdings (Wànxiàngjítuán 万向集团) and a developer and manufacturer of Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries and energy storage systems. Founded in 2001, it has headquarters in Ann Arbor, Michigan and Waltham, Massachusetts. Though it began as an American company, it was bought by Hangzhou-based Wanxiang Group in 2012 after it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Its proprietary technology was spun out of materials developed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Timeline:

BYD Auto (HKSE: 1211) (SZSE: 002594)

EDGE profile

  • Revenues: 153.5 billion yuan / $23.4 billion (2020)
  • Number of employees: 229,154 (2020)
  • Primary industry: IT, rechargeable batteries, handset electronics, energy storage, electric bikes, electric vehicles, urban rail transit systems
  • EV-related affiliates: Toyota, Didi, FAW

See BYD entry in electric vehicle list

China Aviation Lithium Battery Technology

  • Revenues: 2.14 billion yuan / $331 million
  • Number of employees: 1700 (2020)
  • Primary industry: battery production, energy storage, battery manage system
  • EV-related affiliates: GAC Group, Dongfeng Motor, Chang’an Automobile

China Aviation Lithium Battery Technology (CALB), or Zhōnghánglǐdiàn 中航锂电, was established in 2007 by Aviation Industry Corporation of China, a state-owned limited company. In addition to its three manufacturing bases in Luoyang, Changzhou, and Xiamen, CALB also owns an American subsidiary in Chino, California. The controlling shareholder of CALB is Sichuan Chengfei Integration Technology (CITC), or Chéngfēijíchéng 成飞集成. As of May 2021, CALB has not filed for an IPO in China.

Timeline:

Contemporary Amperex Technology Limited (SHE: 300750)

EDGE profile

  • Revenues: 50 billion yuan / $7.76 Billion (2020)
  • Number of employees: 24,800 (2019)
  • Primary industry: battery production, energy storage
  • EV-related affiliates: Tesla, BAIC, GAC Group, Chang’an Automobile, Dongfeng, Mercedes-Benz

Headquartered in Ningde, Fujian, Contemporary Amperex Technology Limited (CATL), or Níngdé Shídài 宁德时代, is a Chinese battery maker and the world’s largest manufacturer of EV batteries. Although CATL was established only in 2011, the founding team has been involved in the lithium-ion battery business since 1999 under the name ATL. CATL currently has subsidiaries in the US, Japan, France and Germany.

Timeline:

EVE Energy (SHE: 300014)

  • Revenues: 8.16 billion yuan / $1.27 billion (2020)
  • Number of employees: /
  • Primary industry: battery production, energy storage
  • EV-related affiliates: Xpeng, BMW, Daimler

EVE Energy (EVE), or Yìwěilǐnéng 亿纬锂能, was established in 2001 in Huizhou, Guangdong. EVE is a manufacturer of lithium batteries and provides for both electric vehicles and consumer electronics, such as e-cigarettes, electric watches and bluetooth headsets. Currently, EVE owns one subsidiary in Powell, Ohio.

Timeline:

Gotion High-tech (SHE: 002074)

  • Revenues: 6.724 billion yuan / $1.04 billion (2020)
  • Number of employees: 2000 (2020)
  • Primary industry: battery production, energy storage, battery manage system, power transmission and distribution systems
  • EV-related affiliates: Volkswagen, SAIC Motor, JAC Group

Established in 1995 under the name of Dongyuan Electric Appliance Group, Gotion High-tech, or Guóxuān Gāokē 国轩高科, established its subsidiary Hefei Gotion High-tech Power Energy in 2006 focusing on battery production. Specialized in Lithium Iron Phosphate Battery, Gotion currently owns seven research and development centers in China, U.S., Japan and Singapore. As of May 2021, Volkswagon is Gotion’s biggest shareholder with a 26.47% share.

Timeline:

Business in the morning.

A lot happens in China’s economy when you’re sleeping. Luckily there’s ChinaEdge – a free newsletter you can read in less than 2 minutes, delivered at 9am ET daily.