Chinese multinational e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding and the world’s largest contract electrics manufacturer Foxconn Technology Group have raised $350m in funding for a new Chinese electric car startup.
The multinational corporations spearheaded the funding initiative for the Chinese electric startup manufacturer Xiaopeng Motors as competition in the new energy electric vehicle industry continues to intensify.
According to an official statement released by the company the latest investment in the Chinese startup now brings the total raised for the electric manufacturer to 5 billion yuan. There was an earlier phase of funding in December, in which Alibaba also participated in. The latest round is Foxconn’s first involvement with the firm.
The Chinese startup showcased its electric car at CES in Las Vegas earlier this month and its debut generated much fanfare amongst attendees at the trade event in Nevada. Xiaopeng is just one of a number of Chinese startups attempting to position itself as a leader in the forthcoming electrification revolution in the country.
It is aiming to speed-up the development of battery-powered technology in order to compete on a global basis with leaders in electric technology such as US company Tesla which is led by entrepreneur and founder of SpaceX Elon Musk.
It has been projected that China’s new energy vehicle sales are set to grow by a whopping 40% in 2018, according to a leading industry organization, even though the country’s traditional automotive market stagnated sharply in the previous twelve months. The stagnation in the automotive sector in China has been attributed to the government’s aggressive policy approach towards new energy vehicles and self-driving technology in a bid to combat the country’s alarming high levels of pollution caused by carbon emissions.
Xiaopeng has announced that its first model which is the ‘CES in Las Vegas will be introduced to the market later this year. Alibaba has invested heavily in smart car technology over the last twelve months and has collaborated with a number of western and Chinese carmakers, such as Ford and BMW.
It has also been disclosed that some of the other investors that were involved in the latest funding drive were IDG Capital, GGV Capital, Morningside Venture Capital, Matrix Partners according to a statement issued on Alibaba’s website. Alibaba’s official website also claimed that Russian billionaire investor Yuri Milner is also supporting the new initiative.