At a time when venture capital funding is slowing in China, EV is one of the few sectors that still excite investors. Example: Zeekr, the luxury electric vehicle brand of China’s largest private automaker Geely, announced Monday that investors have pledged to invest $750 million in the Series A funding round. The post-cash valuation has risen to $13 billion.
The news comes just two months after Zeekr said it filed for an IPO in the US in confidence. reported that the electric car maker was seeking more than $1 billion in revenue with a valuation of more than $10 billion. businessroundups.org has contacted Zeekr regarding the IPO status.
Investors who have agreed to support Zeekr in its Series A include a few heavyweights such as Mobileye’s founder and CEO Amnon Shashua, Chinese battery giant and Tesla supplier Contemporary Amperex Technology Ltd (CATL), Chinese state-owned Yuexiu Industrial Fund, Tongshang Fund and Xin’ an Intelligent Manufacturing Fund, another Chinese state-owned investment vehicle.
The proceeds from the raise will support Zeekr’s technology research and global expansion. Indeed, the company has aggressively expanded its international footprint. In January, my colleague Kirsten wrote that the company had about 3,000 open positions in more than 30 cities around the world, including at its R&D centers in Ningbo and Shanghai in China, and Gothenburg, Sweden. The fledgling automaker also opened an office in Silicon Valley.
Founded in March 2021, Zeekr received its first round of external funding in August of that year. The investment totaled $500 million from a list of strategic investors including Intel Capital, Intel’s corporate VC arm, CATL, Chinese user-generated video site Bilibili, Chinese private equity fund Cathay Fortune Group, whose founder’s holding company Yu Yong is a major shareholder in CATL, and legendary Chinese private equity firm Boyu Capital, an investor in Ant Group.