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Alibaba-backed Xiaopeng Motors aims to raise $1.6 bn to challenge Tesla

The company plans to start pre-sales of its first model, the G3 crossover, by the end of this month


Jack Ma, executive chairman of Chinese internet conglomerate Alibaba Group

Xiaopeng Motors, the Chinese car startup that’s backed by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and Foxconn Technology Group, plans to raise more than 10 billion yuan ($1.6 billion) this year in a bid to take on rivals in the world’s biggest market for electric vehicles.

The company plans to start pre-sales of its first model, the G3 crossover, by the end of this month, founder He Xiaopeng said in an interview at the Boao Forum in China. He didn’t elaborate on the fundraising plans.

Xiaopeng is among startups striving to become China’s Tesla Inc and reshape the auto industry as the Asian country promotes new-energy vehicles in an effort to clean up the environment and cut its reliance on oil imports. Already the biggest EV market, China accounted for more than half of worldwide sales last year. Sales of all vehicles grew at a monthly clip of more than 20 per cent in 2016 and 2017, according to data from the China Passenger Car Association.

Alibaba and Foxconn led a round of fundraising by Xiaopeng, investing 2.2 billion yuan, the carmaker said in January. That put the total investment as of end-January at 5 billion yuan.

Ant Financial seeks to raise $10 billion

Ant Financial is in talks to raise at least $10 billion in a funding round that could value the Chinese internet giant, controlled by Jack Ma, at $150 billion, according to people familiar with the matter.

Singaporean state investment firm Temasek Holdings Pte wants to be the lead investor ahead of Ant Financial’s highly anticipated initial public offering.

First Published: Tue, April 10 2018. 21:17 IST