BYD profit quintuples in 2022

The carmaker reported a net profit close 17 billion yuan for last year, more than five times the amount achieved in 2021.

Photo from CFP

Photo from CFP

By LIU Jiaxin


Chinese carmaker BYD reported a net profit of 16.6 billion yuan (US$2.4 billion) for last year, up 445 percent compared with 2021. Revenue grew 96.2 percent to 424 billion yuan.

At a conference call on Wednesday, WANG Chuanfu, founder and CEO of BYD, said despite a drop of demand in the first two months of this year, sales of BYD cars still went up steadily year on year. BYD’s goal this year is to become the largest auto manufacturer in China.

Presidential approval

BYD’s overseas business is also on the rise. In the first two months, BYD sold 25,000 cars overseas, the same number as were sold in the first six months of last year.

Wang said the it plans to start production in Brazil to support expansion in Latin America.

The carmaker is said to be close to acquiring a Ford factory in Bahia, Brazil. The plant previously produced around 300,000 cars a year. The factory was deactivated by Ford in early 2021, amid the closure of all its manufacturing activities in the country.

BYD plans to invest 3.3 billion yuan in converting the factory to its specific needs.

Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was due in China this week and expected to discuss BYD's takeover of the factory with relevant officials, but cancelled his visit due to illness.

Conquering SE Asia

Brazil is not BYD’s first stop overseas. The company already operates 14 countries.

BYD’s first EV manufacturing base outside of China will be located in Thailand, in an industrial park in the eastern province of Rayong. 

The establishment of a passenger car production base in Thailand is one of BYD’s key initiatives to accelerate its expansion into the Asia-Pacific market, said LIU Xueliang, general manager of Asia-Pacific sales division.

“Thailand has a solid base in the automotive industry with first-class manufacturing capabilities so we chose to build a factory here after careful deliberation,” Liu said

The factory is expected to be officially put into production next year. Cars made there will lead the BYD assault on burgeoning EV markets in Thailand and other ASEAN countries.

The new plant covers 96 hectares as is expected to cost close US$500 million, with an estimated annual output of 150,000 vehicles. Of those, only about 10,000 are expected to be sold in Thailand, with the rest exported to other Asian countries. The Atto 3 electric SUV will be the primary vehicle manufactured at the factory.

Intercontinental challenges

BYD has factories in India and the US, and is looking to expand its manufacturing base to Europe.

Its US division focuses exclusively on electric trucks and buses, but it plans to challenge Tata, India’s largest auto manufacturer, in passenger vehicle sales in the subcontinent.

The company’s goal - to become a top three EV companies in Europe by 2030 - means selling about 800,000 EVs in Europe each year.