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BYD Q1 profit surges on strength of EVs, plug-in hybrids, fuel cell vehicles
Reuters | 2019/4/30

BEIJING -- BYD Co. reported a 632 percent jump in first-quarter net profit, buoyed by strong demand for electric, plug-in hybrid and fuel cell vehicles.

The Shenzhen-headquartered car and battery maker, which has a joint venture with Daimler in China, said last month it expected first-quarter profit to rise by up to nearly 800 percent.

Profit surged to 749.73 million yuan ($111.4 million), up from just 102.4 million yuan a year ago, when earnings fell sharply because of cuts to subsidies for electric vehicles.

BYD said it expected first-half net profit to rise to 1.45 billion yuan to 1.65 billion yuan, versus 479.1 million yuan in the same period last year.

"New-energy vehicles are expected to continue to sell well in the second quarter, and new-energy vehicle sales and revenues continue to maintain strong growth," the company said in a stock exchange filing, adding that new passenger and commercial vehicle models will help boost revenue.

China's market for EVs is booming, but profits in the sector have been squeezed by fierce competition between established automakers and rival startups, as well as moves by Beijing to cut vehicle subsidies to improve product quality and standards.

BYD sold 117,578 vehicles in the first three months, up 5.2 percent from a year earlier. BYD, whose popular models include the Tang-series EVs, seeks to sell 650,000 vehicles in 2019.

Overall EV sales in China jumped 62 percent in 2018 to 1.3 million vehicles, according to China's top car industry body China's Association of Automobile Manufacturers. The trade group sees EV sales hitting 1.6 million this year.

China last month raised its standards for EVs that qualify for subsidies and reduced the amount it is willing to provide to relevant companies.

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