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NIO Inc.

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About NIO

NIO Inc is a China-based holding company principally engaged in the research, development and manufacturing of premium smart electric vehicles. The Company is mainly engaged in the design, development, manufacture and sales of high-end smart electric vehicles. The Company's products mainly include ES8, ES6, EC6 and ET7. The Company develops battery swapping technologies and autonomous driving technologies. Its electric vehicles apply NAD (NIO Autonomous Driving) technology, including super computing platform NIO Adam and super sensing system NIO Aquila. The Company is also engaged in the provision of charging piles, vehicle internet connection services and extended lifetime warranties. The Company mainly conducts its businesses in the domestic market.

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What is NIO and what does it do?

China’s answer to Tesla. That's how NIO is often described. 

Founded by William Li in 2014 and originally known as NextEV, NIO Inc. is a Chinese designer, developer and manufacturer of smart electric vehicles (EVs).

NIO offers consumers a range of electric sedans and SUVs, battery recharging and upgrading convenience through their proprietary battery swapping technology, a battery subscription service (BaaS) as well as autonomous driving innovations.

Much like Tesla, NIO also offers consumers greener domestic power solutions such as Power Home.

NIO’s Chinese name, Weilai, translates as “Blue Sky Coming.” 

Is NIO profitable?

No, NIO is not profitable at this time. 

Since it went public in 2018, NIO’s operating income has been up and down but always in negative territory. 

NIO’s operating income sat at minus US$1.4b, minus US$1.6b and minus US$705m for 2018, 2019 and 2020 respectively.

How does NIO compare to Rivian (RIVN) or Tesla (TSLA)?

At this time, both Tesla and Rivian sell EVs internationally while the overwhelming majority of NIO’s EV sales are in China. A tiny sliver of NIO’s sales are made in Norway.

Tesla reached profitability with US$80m in FY2019, while NIO and Rivian are not there yet.

Is NIO listed in the USA?

Yes, NIO is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

As of 10 March 2022, NIO also has a secondary listing on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange under ticker code 9866.

How much does a NIO car cost?

Nio’s flagship premium electric SUV, the ES8, comes in two models: a six-seater and seven-seater. Pre-subsidy prices begin at: 

  • RMB 468,000 (US$68.9k) for ES8’s six-seater 

  • RMB 476,000 (US$70.1k) for ES8’s seven-seater 

Nio’s five-seater high-performance premium smart electric SUV, the ES6 comes in Sporty, Performance and Signature editions. The ES6’s pre-subsidy prices begin at:

  • RMB 358,000 (US$52.7k) for Sporty

  • RMB 398,000 (US$58.6k) for Performance

  • RMB 468,000 (US$68.9k) for Signature

Nio’s smart electric coupe SUV, the EC6, also comes in Sporty, Performance and Signature models. The EC6’s pre-subsidy prices begin at:

  • RMB 368,000 (US$54.2k) for Sporty

  • RMB 408,000 (US$60.1k) for Performance

  • RMB 468,000 (US$68.9k) for Signature

Nio’s newest vehicles, the ET5 (mid-size electric sedan) and ET7 (flagship premium sedan) will begin at RMB 328,000 and 448,000 respectively. The ET5 and ET7 are not yet available in China.

Who are some big investors in NIO?

Founder, Chairman and CEO William Li is NIO’s biggest investor, holding 10.03% of NIO’s total stock.

NIO’s other largest investors are institutional, with their ownership currently totaling 33.6% of NIO’s total stock. Some of these institutions include Tencent Holdings (8.2%), Baillie Gifford & Co. (5.38%), BlackRock (3.88%) and The Vanguard Group (2.83%). 

Is NIO a good investment?

While NIO is an unprofitable company, its revenue has been on an upward trend leaping from US$700m in FY2018 to US$1.1b in 2019 to US$2.5b in 2020.

However, a Chinese regulatory crackdown on tech companies that began in November 2020 has seen NIO’s share price drop over 70% from above US$50 down to US$14.

Many investors believe that to own NIO you need a strong understanding of China’s government, regulations and economy.

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