Last week, GSR Capital agreed to invest $500M USD in NEVS (National Electric Vehicle Sweden). GSR had previously invested in DiDi Chuxing, one of NEVS partners, back in 2012.
If you’re reading this and aren’t exactly sure who (or what) NEVS is, then you should read this first.
NEVS and GSR have been in talks for quite some time now, and plans were finally confirmed at a formal signing ceremony at the NEVS facility in Trollhättan, with Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven in attendance.
“This means a lot for our company. We have been looking for a long term partner and GSR Capital is a very good match, in many ways,” says Stefan Tilk, President and CEO at NEVS. “GSR will not only give us a financial injection, the company is also very much involved in Electric Vehicles and the business around EVs, which makes this match even better,” he continued.
The GSR investments will be made as a convertible loan with the potential to be converted to shares in NEVS AB. In addition, GSR Capital also announced plans to establish the production of batteries for electric vehicles in Sweden. The production will be aimed at supporting not only NEVS vehicles, but any Swedish-built electric vehicle.
“NEVS fulfills all the requirements; perfect location, good supply of electrical power, close to the river, roads and trains, and we are situated in the industrial heart of Sweden, with NEVS, Volvo and many other companies in the automotive industry. Within NEVS premises there is also access to land to build the factory,” Stefan Tilk states.
NEVS had originally signed an agreement on cooperation with DiDi Chuxing back in October of 2017. DiDi is a ride-sharing leader in China, similar to Uber and Lyft here in the states. Prior to the NEVS DiDi Chuxing agreement, in December of 2012, GSR had become a DiDi investor. It’s worth noting that DiDi recently raised $13 billion from investors, which will go towards developing its “artificial intelligence technology, as well as international expansion and green vehicle initiative,” as reported by TechCrunch.com.
“Our relations with DiDi Chuxing have been important in the discussions with GSR and in finalizing this deal”, says Kai Johan Jiang, main owner of NEVS. “With GSR´s investments, NEVS will be able to take further important steps towards the green goal with sustainable mobility solutions of the future,” Kai Johan Jiang concludes.
Our understanding is that this means NEVS’ operations are a bit more secure now that it has a supplier of batteries. We think it’s safe to say that you can expect to see Swedish EVs with Saab-inspired design cues on the road in the near future—at least in parts of Europe and China. Saab itself will probably never make a comeback, but, if you ask us, this is the next best thing.