Evergrande acquires EV battery maker Cenat

By Graeme Roberts | 30 January 2019

China's Evergrande Group continued to expand into the automotive industry with the acquisition of Shanghai-based electric vehicle battery manufacturer Cenat New Energy Company, a Sino-Japanese lithium-ion battery joint venture.

This is the property group's second major automotive sector acquisition in less than a month, after it acquired a 51% stake in National Electric Vehicle Sweden AB (NEVS) for US$930m.

NEVS was founded in 2012 by Kai Johan Jiang when he bought the bankruptcy estate of Sweden's Saab Automobile. The company has vehicle plants in Trollhattan, Sweden, and in Tianjin, China and a third plant is being built in Shanghai.

Last week Evergrande Group subsidiary Evergrande Health Industry paid CNY1.06bn (US$157m) for a 58.1% stake in Shanghai Cenat New Energy Company which has manufacturing plants in Shanghai, Jiangxi and Jiangsu provinces and in the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region. It supplies local automakers such as SAIC Motor, Dongfeng Motor and Changan Automobile.

Evergrande Group plans to lift Cenat's annual lithium-ion battery production capacity to 60 gigawatt hours in the next 10 years, as it looks to become a major player in the budding new-energy vehicle industry.

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