EV sales boom boosts Warren Buffett-backed BYD


Photo by Zhang Peng/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Net profit at China-headquartered BYD, one of the world’s largest EV makers, may have as much as quadrupled in the first nine of months of 2022 compared with a year earlier amid rapidly growing sales, the company said in a stock filing today after the close of trade in Hong Kong today.

Net profit may reach as much as 9.5 billion yuan, or US$1.3 billion, compared with 2.44 billion yuan in the first nine months of 2021, BYD said in an estimate. (See details here.)

BYD, which is more than 7% owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, has emerged this year to rival Tesla as world’s largest EV maker. Earlier this month, BYD reported sales of new energy vehicles nearly tripled in September from a year earlier to 201,259. For the first nine months of the year, BYD sales soared by 250% year-on-year to 1.18 million EVs, shaking off industry disruption from Covid-related lockdowns in Shanghai in the second quarter in part on the strength of its in-house battery supplies.

“In the third quarter of 2022, despite the complex and severe economic situation, the spread of the pandemic, extreme high temperature weather, high commodity prices and other unfavorable factors, the new energy vehicle industry continued to accelerate its upward trend,” BYD said in today’s announcement. “Sales volume of new energy vehicles maintained strong growth.”

Warren Buffett, chief executive officer of Berkshire Hathaway, tours the exhibition floor prior to the Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting in Omaha, Nebraska, U.S.
Warren Buffett | Image source: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Although not a household name globally like Tesla, BYD has stepped up overseas expansion this year with efforts in Japan, Thailand, and India (see related post); this month, it is introducing three electric models at the Paris Auto Show this week. BYD is already the EV leader in China, which boasts the world’s largest auto market.

BYD’s overall business is more diversified than its EV rivals – it also makes handset components, semiconductors and photovoltaics. BYD ranked No. 579 on the Forbes Global 2000 ranking of the world’s top publicly traded companies earlier this year. Its market cap has at times this year exceeded GM and Ford combined.

BYD Chairman Wang Chuanfu holds a fortune worth $19.3 billion on the Forbes Real-Time Billionaires List today. BYD Vice Chairman Lu Xiangyang, a cousin of Wang who also leads investment firm Youngy Investment Holding, is worth $15.5 billion, and BYD director Xia Zuoquan, who leads investment firm Zhengyuan Capital, is worth $3.5 billion.

China has the largest number of billionaires in the world after the United States.

This article was first published on forbes.com

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