China’s BYD Co Ltd, an automaker best known for its association with billionaire Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc, has unveiled plans to direct the proceeds of a probable private share placement towards new investments.
The fundraising is needed as the company seeks to lift the production of batteries and for the research and development of new models – the carmaker is currently one of China’s pioneers in the field of new energy vehicles – the country’s term for plug-in hybrids, electric cars and fuel cell vehicles. Backed by Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, the manufacturer is also present in the United States, where it only produces at a small factory some electric busses for the use of local municipalities. BYD made the recent announcement through a Shenzhen stock exchange affiliated website, later on confirming the posting was official, but refraining from giving any more details on the procedure.
Recent reports said the BYD private share placement mulled the raising of up to 12 billion yuan ($1.9 billion) and at the beginning of the week the automaker stopped trading both H and A shares at the Hong Kong and Shanghai stock exchanges, as it announced the preparation of a placement. BYD is one of the biggest Chinese automakers without any government involvement and has been trying to establish itself as a major player in the field of electric and hybrid vehicles, both for passenger cars and commercial vehicles.