BYD Automobile Company said it planned to acquire a 20% stake in Rever Automotive, its local distributor in Thailand, to consolidate its lead in the country’s battery electric vehicle (BEV) market.

The news came shortly after the automaker opened its first overseas vehicle assembly plant in Rayong province with capacity to produce 150,000 vehicles per year and employ 10,000 people. The company was investing US$490m in the facility, which would supply electric and hybrid vehicles to the local and regional markets.

Rever Automotive said it now has 117 BYD dealer outlets in place across the country, after it launched the brand in 2022, and sold 10,000 vehicles in the first quarter of 2024. Dolphin is its best selling model followed by the Seal and Han Plus.

Liu Xueliang, general manager for sales at BYD Asia-Pacific operations, said: “We are thrilled to deepen our partnership with Rever Automotive to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles.”

Meanwhile BYD chairman Wang Chuanfu, who was in Thailand for the opening of the new assembly plant, said his company would “appropriately manage promotions and pricing adjustments” following local customer complaints about the company’s discounting strategy.

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