In September, Xiaomi announced the registration of its electric vehicle (EV) company, Xiaomi EV Inc. The Chinese electronics manufacturer will enter the market with $1.55 billion in capital and has named company founder and CEO, Lei Jun, as its legal representative, according to Reuters.
Since announcing its EV intentions earlier this year, the Beijing-based tech firm has courted several automakers – including embattled car manufacturer, Evergrande, and Great Wall Motors, SAIC and BYD – but has failed to settle on a brand yet.
Xiaomi’s interest in moving into production has been pronounced. The firm has reportedly screened more than 20 000 candidates and claims to have around 300 employees working under the Xiaomi EV Inc. brand. In addition, the management team has met with as many as 200 prominent industry heads but has remained tight-lipped on what sort of EV offering it plans to showcase.
Fellow Chinese smartphone and telecommunications firm, Huawei, has also been linked with the EV sector in recent times. Rumours have circulated about a potential Huawei EV brand, but the company has denied these claims, instead setting its sights on developing software and information and communication technologies for smart vehicles instead.
At the wrong end of a bevy of sanctions by the United States, Huawei has seen its smartphone sales drop significantly in recent times. Since the start of 2021, its revenues in the first two quarters have dropped nearly 25%, according to a report issued by the Shenzhen-based firm.
In its wake, Xiaomi has experienced a boom in smartphone sales, with the brand becoming the most popular smartphone worldwide in June 2021. Second-quarter figures indicate the company grew by as much as 64% year-on-year, with its market share growing 83%, according to analytics from research firm, Canalys.
Jun, who states that Xiaomi EV Inc. is his final entrepreneurial venture, said that he intends the EV brand to showcase premium vehicles to buyers around the world, allowing users to enjoy a “ubiquitous smart life”.
In late August the company announced the acquisition of self-driving startup, Deepmotion, for a figure nearing $77 million, adding significant clout to its future research and development. Xiaomi executives claim the Deepmotion purchase will enhance the brand’s competitiveness going forward.