Shares in Daimler partner Farasis Energy shot up 76% on its first day of trading on Friday, making it the highest valued electric vehicle battery maker on Shanghai’s Nasdaq-style STAR Market.

Why it matters: The listing has been long awaited as global auto majors increasingly seek out sources of Chinese-made EV batteries in an effort to ensure steady battery supply.

  • Farasis is the second Chinese battery maker to be directly invested in by an overseas automaker, just a month following a RMB 8.7 billion deal between Volkswagen and Gotion high-tech.

Details: Shares of Farasis Energy surged in their trading debut Friday, opening 114% above the company’s initial public offer price in early trading, to close 76% higher at RMB 27.96 ($3.99). At that price, its market capitalization is nearly RMB 30 billion ($4.3 billion).

  • Farasis issued around 214 million shares at RMB 15.9 per share, accounting for approximately 20% of the total share capital after the issuance.
  • Previously, reports have circulated that Daimler planned to buy a 3% share, worth RMB 510 million, later confirmed by Farasis’s prospectus.
  • Daimler earlier this month said Farasis would use the proceeds to build a battery plant in Bitterfeld-Wolfen, Germany, and give a board seat to the German automaker.
  • Headquartered in the central Chinese province of Jiangxi, Farasis is the country’s fifth-largest battery maker with 2.27 gigawatt hours in sales volume in China last year, less than 10% of what industry giant CATL produced.
  • The company has been a long-term partner with Chinese automakers including BAIC and Great Wall Motors since 2016, and forged an alliance with Daimler as its certified battery supplier in late 2018.

Context: Tesla partnered with Chinese battery giant CATL in an effort further reduce the cost of its Model 3 sedan, already the top-selling EV model in China. Established automakers are following suit.

  • CATL shares closed at RMB 224.11 with a market capitalization of nearly RMB 500 billion on Monday following the announcement that Honda will launch in China its first EV using CATL batteries in 2022, according to Reuters.
  • Meanwhile, South Korean automaker Hyundai is deepening its partnership with CATL. It is reportedly (in Chinese) in discussions with the battery maker on a potential global supply contract after three years of collaboration in China.

Jill Shen

Jill Shen is Shanghai-based technology reporter. She covers Chinese mobility, autonomous vehicles, and electric cars. Connect with her via e-mail: jill.shen@technode.com or Twitter: @yushan_shen