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What's going on?
China’s BYD overtook Tesla as the world’s biggest EV maker by sales this week.
What does this mean?
Only a handful of BYD’s factories are based in regions that suffered from China’s most severe lockdowns, which allowed the carmaker to press ahead even as rivals Tesla, Xpeng, and Nio struggled. That enabled BYD to sell 641,000 EVs in the first six months of this year – up more than 300% from the same time in 2021, and 14% more than Tesla managed in the same period. In fact, the Chinese company has now officially dethroned the American EV maker as the world’s biggest in terms of EV sales. And as if to prove a point, BYD overtook South Korea’s LG Energy as the world’s second-biggest producer of EV batteries too.
Why should I care?
For markets: There’s a reason Buffett’s bought in.
BYD is backed by the one and only Warren Buffett, and this might be why: the company is different from other EV makers insofar as it self-produces a lot of the parts that its rivals need suppliers for. It’s planning to become directly involved with the mining of lithium too, which will prove useful as batteries become harder to come by. That might be why BYD’s stock is up around 70% from its March lows, and why it’s on track to join an exclusive crew of Chinese stocks that have hit a market value of 1 trillion yuan.
The bigger picture: Made in China, by China.
BYD’s rise underscores China’s rapidly growing car industry, which has benefited as its EV makers have turned their focus onto exports: they shipped twice the number of cars last year than they did the year before. But analysts think there’s a lot more room to keep building on this momentum, with just 2% of Chinese car exports into Europe last year coming from homegrown brands.
Originally posted as part of the Finimize daily email.
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