Chinese electric vehicle company NIO, backed by Tencent Holdings Ltd., has filed for U.S. initial public offering to raise US$1.8 billion under the symbol NIO, according to its prospectus.
Started in 2014 by Chinese entrepreneur Li Bin, NIO has raised over US$2.4 billion in six rounds of investments from investors including Tencent, CITIC Capital, Baidu Inc, Hillhouse Capital, Capital Today, Sequoia Capital, Joy Capital and others.
In June, NIO started delivering its first electric car – ES8 a seven-seat SUV. The company is now planning to introduce a lower-cost SUV next year and more models in subsequent years.
In the first half of 2018, NIO reported less than US$7 million in revenue and net loss of $503 million, according to the filing. The company said that it had delivered 481 ES8 vehicles through July and had “unfulfilled reservations” for more than 17,000 electric vehicles.
Almost all of the company’s revenue came from vehicle sales. No revenue figures were disclosed for prior periods.
Li Bin, founder of NIO who holds 17.2% of shares, will donate 50 million shares of NIO held by him, which is equivalent to one-third of his shares, while maintaining the voting rights.
China is the world’s largest passenger vehicle market. According to Frost & Sullivan, battery-powered electric vehicle sales are expected to increase by more than 40% a year in China through 2022. NIO represents new competition to automakers like Tesla that are adopting electric systems and increasingly seeking to automate certain aspects of driving.