Briefing: Chinese EV startup Singulato raising funds from government, Itochu

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国资、日企同时注资奇点汽车 – TMT Post

What happened: Chinese electric vehicle (EV) maker Singulato is reportedly closing its latest round of funding for an undisclosed amount. According to Chinese business research platform Tianyancha, the company received RMB 6.33 million (around $920,000) in late May. A list of new shareholders appeared at the same time, including a capital fund backed by the government of eastern Anhui Province, Lenovo’s investment arm Legend Star, and Japanese trading company Itochu. A spokeswoman from Singulato said the financing has “gone smoothly so far,” but did not reveal further details when contacted by TechNode on Tuesday.

Why it’s important: Founded in 2014 by Shen Haiyin, a former vice president of data security company Qihoo 360, Singulato has raised $2.5 billion in funding, including a $600 million investment led by the municipal government of Tongling, a city in Anhui Province, in 2016. However, the company postponed the shipment of its first EV model iS6 to year-end, which it initially planned to deliver in late 2018. Chinese governments have invested heavily in struggling domestic EV startups. EV automaker Nio announced in its first quarter earnings report last month that Beijing E-Town, a capital fund backed by the Yizhuang district government of Beijing, will invest up to RMB 10 billion to help it build a plant in Beijing. The company’s share prices have plummeted 24% to $2.96 as of market close on Monday from May 28, when its earnings results were released, when it disclosed a 50% drop in revenues.