With significant interest from investors including Intel, battery maker CATL and online entertainment firm Bilibili, the premium electric vehicle brand by Geely, Zeekr, raised as much as $500 million from its first external funding round.
The total stake of the investors in electric vehicle the company would be 5.6 per cent which effectively valued the company at about $9 billion, Zeekr said.
The major brand of electric car that the company makes is its Zeekr 001 model which is manufactures in the eastern Chinese city of Ningbo. The company expects to start delivery of its electric cars by the end of this year.
The company has set a target of selling 650,000 vehicles every year by 2025.
Cathy Fortune Corporation, an investing firm that whose major investments are in the mining sector, and Boyu Capital, a private equity firm, are also among the firms that invested in the company during the funding round. Additionally, the carmaker said in a statement that Boyu Capital also signed an agreement with it for making long term investments in Zeekr.
Geely Automobile and its parent Zhejiang Geely Holding Group are the joint owners of Zeekr.
It said that it also expects contribution from the companies in areas of intelligent connectivity, batteries, young consumer markets and raw materials.
More of traditional car makers and auto companies around the world are partnering with technology companies, battery makers and mining companies for developing future products and secure supply of components as the world market is fast shifting towards electric vehicles.
The Zeekr was launched in March this year as a joint venture between Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, which also owns Volvo Cars and has a 9.7 per cent stake in Daimler AG, and Geely Automobile. This new company is pitted to rival a range of electric vehicle companies including Tesla Inc and Nio Inc.
A joint investment of 2 billion yuan ($308.4 million) had been made by the two companies in the new venture earlier.
(Adapted from Europe.AutoNews.com)