Chinese EV company Xpeng shares surge 13% after forecasting growth in car deliveries

BEIJING — Chinese electric car company Xpeng saw its shares soar after reporting an improvement in profit margin and an upbeat outlook for second-quarter deliveries.

The company’s Hong Kong-listed shares rose more than 13% in morning trade Wednesday. U.S.-listed shares had climbed by nearly 6% in U.S. trade Tuesday after reporting first quarter results.

Xpeng reported that vehicle margin rose 5.5% in the first three months of the year, from a negative 2.5% in the prior quarter. Vehicle margin is a measure of profitability — the higher the margin, the greater the profit the company is making on its car sales.

The company forecast deliveries of 29,000 to 32,000 cars in the second quarter, a year-on-year increase of at least 25%.

Xpeng delivered 21,821 cars in the first quarter of the year, and 9, 393 cars in April.

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Following the earnings release, Nomura analysts said in a note Wednesday they are reviewing their estimates for Xpeng.

Overall, we see XPENG forging ahead with its business plans, and believe that it may enjoy some development ahead,” the report said.

“Meanwhile, considering the intensifying competition in the overall market, that renders smaller players more vulnerable, we remain slightly cautious and suggest investors to closely monitor the new model to be launched under the MONA brand next month,” the Nomura analysts said.

Similar to other companies looking to stay competitive in China’s electric car market, Xpeng is expanding its product lineup with a lower-cost vehicle brand called Mona.

The first Mona car — an electric sedan below 200,000 yuan ($27,890) — is set for release in June and scheduled to begin mass deliveries in the third quarter, according to the company.

Xpeng attributed several hundred million yuan in services revenue to its partnership with German automaker Volkswagen. The services segment overall surged by 93.1% year-on-year to 1 billion yuan in the first quarter.

The Chinese company said that in the first half of this year it is establishing partnerships with auto dealership groups in Western Europe, Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Australia to open new stores. In all, Xpeng said it plans to expand its sales network to more than 20 countries. That’s according to a first quarter earnings call transcript from FactSet.

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