WM Motor, a China's Electric Vehicle maker, is set to close its a new round of financing this month, according to an internal letter by CEO and founder of WM Motor SHEN Hui (Freeman SHEN, 沈晖).
The company was reported to raise at least CNY 2 billion (USD 288.33 million) in its latest funding round, valuing the firm at over CNY 20 billion, WM said the size of the latest fundraising would exceed 3 billion yuan and the proceeds would be used in “developing new phase of R&D, customer experience and services”, reported by Reuters.
Rumors said this round of funding can be led by Baidu, which has invested in series B in 2017. At CES 2019, WM Motor announced the strategic partnership with Baidu to jointly develop on Level 3 autonomous driving solutions which will be mass produced by 2021 (see more in this article).
WM’s co-founder and senior VP LU Bin has released “Customer-focused Platform” strategy last December, marking the start of the company’s reconstruction, according to SHEN in the letter. Feb 28, the company launched the First Annual Smart Mobility Dealerships Meeting. LU Bin claimed that smart mobility dealerships will provide not only sales and after-sale services but also mobility service in the future. WM has signed agreements with 50 dealerships, covering around 50 cities in China. The company expects the number to grow to one hundred at the end of 2019.
Nio, an NYSE-listed Chinese EV manufacturer opened its seventh Nio House in Shanghai in July 2018, trying to lure wealthy Chinese customers to buy its luxury car. Tesla, on the other hand, is implementing the online sales strategy. Tesla CEO Elon Musk said last Thursday the company will be reducing headcount in sales, and closing most of its retail stores, which caught many investors and even employees by surprise, reported by Blomberg.
The company has more than 3,000 talents in its team and SHEN announced two important executives have joined. The company’s Chief Data Officer MEI Songlin (梅松林), former J.D.Power’s VP, will be in charge of data application and customer-focused refined operations. LIU Xianzhi (刘宪志) was appointed as the company’s VP, who leads WM’s auto finance, fundraising, and management operations.
The company has set its three-step strategy at the very first time. Stage 1, WM aims to popularize affordable EVs, which we can tell from the competitive price of EX5 ranged from CNY 186,000 (USD 27,747.48) to 247,000 (USD 36,847.46). Stage 2, the company portray itself as a data-driven smart hardware firm. Stage 3, the company will be a smart mobility provider.