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Heavy! Xiaopeng Motor acquires Didi Intelligent driving Business

2024-06-17 Update From: AutoBeta autobeta NAV: AutoBeta > News >

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AutoBeta(AutoBeta.net)08/28 Report--

After Volkswagen, Xiaopeng announced another big news.

Xiaopeng announced on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange that Xiaopeng signed a share purchase agreement with Didi Group to acquire Didi smart car development assets for a total consideration of 5.835 billion Hong Kong dollars (US $744 million).

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At the same time, Xiaopeng signed a strategic cooperation agreement with Didi Group, the two sides will launch a new electric vehicle brand, the project is "MONA", the first product is A-class intelligent electric vehicle, priced at about 150000 yuan, will be mass produced in 2024, and will be sold to both C-end and B-end. In addition to working together to create new brand models, the two sides will also explore cooperation in the operation, brand marketing, financial and insurance services, charging facilities, Robotaxi and international market of Xiaopeng models on Didi platform.

Xiaopeng said that Xiaopeng will officially enter the stage of multi-brand strategy through cooperation. A month ago, Volkswagen announced that it would take a stake in Xiaopeng Motor. The two sides signed a framework agreement on strategic technical cooperation and minority equity investment, and reached a long-term strategic partnership. It is understood that the two sides plan to jointly develop two Volkswagen brand electric models for China's medium-sized car market, in which Xiaopeng will contribute a complete vehicle platform as well as an intelligent cockpit and intelligent driving system. Volkswagen, on the other hand, provides the world's leading engineering and supply chain capabilities, both of which hang the Volkswagen logo and plan to launch to the market in 2026.

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Xiaopeng's acquisition of Didi's smart car development business also means that Didi will give up building cars independently.

Didi has always had the idea of building a car, and the real decision should be after the release of Didi D1. In April 2018, Didi established a "torrent alliance" with 31 automobile supply chain companies. At the meeting, Cheng Wei, founder, chairman and CEO of DiDi, said firmly: "Didi does not build cars and does not seek to become the largest automobile operator in the future."

It is worth mentioning that just a month before the establishment of the Hongliu Alliance, Didi finalized a strategic cooperation with ideal Automobile, and the two sides will set up a joint venture, Beijing Orange Electric Travel Technology Co., Ltd., which plans to jointly build models for the travel market. However, the joint venture has filed for bankruptcy liquidation, marking the end of a four-year partnership in manufacturing electric cars, while neither Didi nor ideal Motor has filed for bankruptcy protection. Li responded years later, "We got strategic investment from Wang Xing and Meituan in 2019, while Meituan and Didi are competitors, and the two sides have some concerns about such cooperation, so we terminated the cooperation."

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In November 2020, Didi held a press conference to announce the important achievements of the "Torrent Alliance" over the past two and a half years. The customized ride-hailing car, named D1, is jointly built by Didi and BYD and is produced at BYD's Changsha plant. It is understood that Didi's participation includes vehicle engineering Package, ergonomic layout, interior and exterior modeling, vehicle configuration, seat prototype, car networking software architecture and other designs, giving priority to the in-car ride experience, especially the comfort of rear passengers, is a model only aimed at the ride-hailing market. However, the D1 model did not get good results, with 10318 sold in 2021 and only 1474 left in 2022. BYD D1 officially began selling to individuals in November 2022, but only 265 vehicles were sold from January to July 2023, which means Didi has given up on D1.

In March 2021, Xiaomi announced that it was building cars, and at about the same time, it was revealed that Didi was secretly planning the car-building business, with the internal code name "Da Vinci", headed by Didi Vice President Yang Jun, and Didi would build a compact pure electric car with a class of 150000 yuan. Subsequently, Didi began to poach people with high salaries in the circle, but the way to build cars was not clear. It was reported in the market that Didi had acquired Guomi Zhijun, a holding subsidiary of Guomi Automobile, so as to obtain the qualification of car production. Of course, from the current point of view, Didi car-making business has been "stillborn", from independent car building to cooperative car building.

Why did Xiaopeng cooperate with Didi to build cars? The explanation given by he Xiaopeng is that the completion of the project code "MONA" is very high, and Didi has previously invested billions of yuan in development, which Xiaopeng believes is a very attractive asset.

In other words, most of the research and development of MONA is done by Didi, which is essentially a sale project. Xiaopeng is bought for a total consideration of 5.835 billion Hong Kong dollars (US $744 million), and Didi can recover blood. At the same time, Xiaopeng gets a model close to mass production, which can reduce Xiaopeng's R & D cost and cycle, undertake the huge post-market scale of Didi, and bring considerable market performance to Xiaopeng. at the same time, expand the competitiveness of new and old competitors such as NIO and ideal. He Xiaopeng said that annual sales of MONA are expected to reach 100000 vehicles, and if sales targets are met for two consecutive years, there will be additional equity consideration, and the maximum equity ratio can be raised to 5 per cent.

Didi giving up building cars is more like the tears of the times.

Market speculation may be affected by production qualifications. Before Didi, Baidu was a clear example. It announced a cooperation with Geely in early 2021, but has since been trapped by production qualifications. Baidu had to change its brand to "Jiyue" in order to achieve mass production of the whole car, from independent car building to cooperative car building. Of course, if you have to abandon the huge investment in car-building projects because of the "birth permit", it is indeed too helpless.

It may also be Cheng Wei's change in the mentality of Didi car-building. Now that the best time for car-building has passed, brands such as Ulay and ideal have entered the market earlier, have enough capital market imagination and form a certain brand power, so as to increase the influence of the industry, while car-building itself is a business of "investing in high returns and long cycle", even if officials announce car-building plans and open financing channels. But the secondary market may not be able to give higher-than-expected valuations.

In any case, Didi gives up building cars, which is relatively friendly to both sides at present. Didi's timely stop-loss is better than two years of losses, and Xiaopeng can also get huge post-market traffic, but in this cooperation project, Xiaopeng seems to make more money.

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