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Alibaba-backed carmaker goals to lift greater than $2b, Lifestyle News & Top Stories

Xiaopeng Motors, the Chinese automotive start-up that’s backed by Alibaba Group Holding and Foxconn Technology Group, plans to lift greater than 10 billion yuan (S$2 billion) this yr in a bid to tackle rivals within the world’s greatest market for electrical automobiles.

The company plans to start out pre-sales of its first mannequin, the G3 crossover, by the top of this month, founder He Xiaopeng mentioned in an interview on the Boao Forum in China. He didn’t elaborate on the fund-raising plans.

Xiaopeng is amongst start-ups striving to change into China’s Tesla and reshape the automotive business because the Asian nation promotes new-energy automobiles in an effort to scrub up the surroundings and lower its reliance on oil imports.

Already the largest EV market, China accounted for greater than half of worldwide gross sales final yr. Sales of all automobiles grew at a month-to-month clip of greater than 20 per cent in 2016 and final yr, in line with knowledge from the China Passenger Car Association.

Alibaba and Foxconn led a spherical of fund-raising by Xiaopeng, investing 2.2 billion yuan, the carmaker mentioned in January. That put the entire funding as of end-January at 5 billion yuan, in line with the company.

The funding marked Alibaba’s newest transfer within the automotive business because the Internet big bets linked vehicles will generate new income. The Hangzhou-based group has developed its personal automotive working system.

NIO, one other Chinese electric-car start-up, was elevating greater than US$1 billion (S$1.three billion) in a brand new spherical of financing from traders led by Tencent Holdings, in line with folks with direct data of the matter in November. Companies investing in that spherical included Baillie Gifford & Co, the second-biggest institutional investor in Tesla, Lone Pine Capital, Citic Capital Holdings and China Asset Management, one particular person mentioned.

He mentioned the company will collaborate with Alibaba in maps and cloud merchandise in a non-exclusive alliance, including the company’s focus is on guaranteeing high quality of manufacturing ramp-up.

Capacity will attain “tens of thousands” of items subsequent yr, he mentioned, with out giving present figures.

Xiaopeng helps China’s plan to permit international automakers larger possession in joint ventures as this may spur actual competitors and make sure the high quality of vehicles made in China, he mentioned.

Separately, Chinese President Xi Jinping reiterated on Tuesday that the nation will decrease restrictions on international possession within the auto sector and measures ought to be carried out as quickly as potential. China may also cut back import tariffs on automobiles, Mr Xi mentioned in a speech on the Boao Forum.

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