(Yicai Global) Aug. 10 -- Chinese electric carmaker Xpeng Motor has secured CNY4 billion (USD588 million) in its latest funding round as it looks to start making its first production vehicle, research new cars and build a network of charging piles and dealerships.
Primavera Capital Group, Morningside Venture Capital and Chairman He Xiaopeng led the round, company President Brian Gu told Yicai Global. The latest series, which follows CNY2.2 billion brought in earlier this year, values the company at around CNY25 billion and keeps He's shareholding ratio roughly the same as before.
Nearly USD1 billion of the funds raised this year have geared the firm up for production and sales of the G3, which is scheduled for first deliveries at the end of this year, Gu said. The rest will be poured into the construction of 150 super charging stations and dozens of direct sales outlets in first-tier cities, both of which he expects to be built this year.
He Xiaopeng hired Gu, a former chairman of Asia Pacific investment banking at JPMorgan and a pivotal player in Alibaba's record-breaking initial public offering, in March this year to take charge of global strategy and fundraising and to keep Xpeng ahead of an industry dominated by traditional carmakers.
In order to raise the funds for that, Gu plans to diversify the firm's financing channels next year. He has a detailed plan to underpin corporate development while maintaining sufficient cash flow to keep up with mass production and delivery of the G3, he said.
Those plans may include an IPO, but it is unlikely in the short term, he added, saying Xpeng is progressing at its own pace based on development needs, opportunities and costs. Gu knows competitors may look to go public in a bid to raise additional cash and is keeping a close eye on rival Nio to see how it looks to raise cash, he added.