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By Ding Yi / Mar 16, 2021 01:11 PM / Business & Tech

Since its $1.5 billion U.S. initial public offering last August, Chinese electric vehicle startup Xpeng has found favor with outside investors amid its efforts to build smart cars on par with stronger rivals such as Tesla.

On Monday, Xpeng announced it had received new investment of 500 million yuan ($77 million) from Guangdong Yuecai Investment, an investment arm of the government of the southern Chinese province of Guangdong, where the young automaker is headquartered.

The fresh capital will go to one of Xpeng’s subsidiaries to “accelerate the company’s business expansion,” Xpeng said in a statement. Chairman and CEO He Xiaopeng said that the new funds will also reinforce Xpeng’s commitment to “building a comprehensive EV infrastructure in the fast-growing areas of China.”

Xpeng has a strong presence in Guangdong, where it operates a wholly owned manufacturing plant and the majority of its more than 5,000 employees are based. The company is also building a new production base in the province, which will also serve as a research center, and is set to go into operation by December 2022

The new investment comes just two months after Xpeng obtained a credit line of 12.8 billion yuan from five major Chinese financial institutions to strengthen its capabilities in manufacturing, sales, services and operations.

In January and February, Xpeng delivered a total of 8,238 electric vehicles, representing a year-on-year increase of 577%. The sales figure, however, is still eclipsed by that of Tesla, whose Shanghai-assembled Model 3 claimed the title of China’s second most popular new energy car model with sales of 27,531 units during the first two months of the year, according to the China Passenger Car Association. Tesla in January started delivering the Model Y in China, its second China-built car model.

Contact reporter Ding Yi (yiding@caixin.com)

Related: Tesla Takes Two of the Three Top Spots for China’s Best-Selling NEV Models


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