Chinese electric truck start-up Windrose explores production in Europe

Chinese electric truck start-up Windrose explores production in Europe


Chinese electric truck start-up Windrose explores production in Europe

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SHANGHAI (Reuters) - Chinese electric heavy truck start-up Windrose plans to outsource manufacturing of its vehicles to automaking partners in Europe, its founder and CEO said on Thursday, as it seeks to take on rivals Tesla (TSLA.O) and Mercedes Benz (MBGn.DE) in the region.

CEO Han Wen said the company is in talks with several European countries over investments in the company and expects to announce a deal by the end of March. Windrose is planning an initial public offering (IPO) in the United States later this year, he told Reuters.

He declined to say which country would be a front-runner or how much would be invested but said the investment if agreed, would raise the size of its total pre-IPO fundraising from the originally planned $100 million.

The company has already received commitments for $70 million in equity and bank debt from investors, and is in the process of selecting banks for its IPO, Han said.

Europe has become an important overseas market for Chinese EV makers which are facing intensifying competition and slowing growth in their home market. Chinese automakers' growing clout as a major exporter is also causing trade frictions and concerns in Europe and the United States.

Windrose joins other automakers such as Tesla, Mercedes Benz and Volvo (VOLVb.ST) that have developed electric trucks as they target retailers and logistics companies seeking to reduce carbon emissions and fuel costs.

Han said Windrose would start testing its electric trucks with sports goods retailer Decathalon in the port of Dunkirk, France in June. He also said Decathalon has been deploying Windrose trucks in China after initial road tests.

Decathlon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Founded in 2022, Windrose outsources its truck manufacturing in China to Anhui Jianghuai Automotive Group (600418.SS).