Geely: Brand expansion, production capacity increase, CASE strategy implementation
Proton’s expansion in Asia, electrified new brands, and Smart EV global launch in 2022
In 2018, major Chinese automaker Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd. (hereafter: Geely Automobile Holdings) significantly increased its global vehicle sales to 1.5 million units, reflecting an increase of 20.3% over the previous year. In addition, in the midst of the market slowdown in China, domestic sales grew 19.2% to 1.473 million units. Geely Automobile Holdings achieved record high sales both globally and domestically. At the beginning of 2019, the company set a sales target of 1.51 million units for the year, but this figure was revised downward to 1.36 million units in July.
After the acquisition of Volvo Cars in 2010, Zhejiang Geely Holding Group acquired London Taxi (now called London Electric Vehicle Company; LEVC) in 2013 and Proton of Malaysia in 2018. Zhejiang Geely Holding Group consists of five sub-groups (Geely Auto Group, Volvo Car Group, Geely Commercial Vehicle Group, Geely Technology Group, and Mitime Group). Among these, three are engaged in the manufacturing and sale of finished vehicles: Geely Auto Group, Volvo Car Group, and Geely Commercial Vehicle Group. As of September 2019, Geely is comprised of three sub-groups with nine brands, attracting a broad customer base by offering a wide array of specialty specialized brands, from low-end to high-end, such as connected cars and NEV (new energy vehicles) brands, and commercial vehicle brands.
After Zhejiang Geely Holding Group (hereafter: Geely Holding Group) Chairman Mr. Li Shufu became the largest shareholder of Daimler AG in February 2018, collaborations with Daimler have been progressing. In March 2019, the company announced that it had established a joint venture for the development of the “smart” brand in China, the global market launch planned for 2022. Further, in May 2019, a mobility joint venture was established with Daimler subsidiary Daimler Mobility Services GmbH. The joint venture, Weixing Technology Co., Ltd., will specialize in the operation ride hailing services using high-end (premium) models.
With the rapid increase in sales in recent years and with a target of reaching sales of 2 million units in 2020, Zhejiang Geely Holding Group has been expanding existing plants and building new plants one after another, and furthering the manufacturing of models which go beyond the boundaries of Geely Auto Group, Volvo Car Group, and Geely Commercial Vehicles. On October 7, 2019, the company announced a plan to merge the internal combustion engine operations of Geely Holding Group and Volvo Car Group and make an independent business unit to develop and supply next-generation combustion engines and hybrid systems as a global supplier. Volvo Cars will focus on the development of an all-electric range of premium cars.
The strategy for CASE (connected, autonomous, sharing, electric) is to build a battery supply system in which Geely Group both collaborates with other companies and works in-house to promote electrification. In the connected area, the company is partnering with major IT companies such as Baidu and Tencent. Geely is planning its production models to be 5G compatible. As for sharing, besides the venture with Daimler, since 2015 a Geely subsidiary has been launching NEV models. In addition, the company is aiming to announce its plan to release a Level 4 autonomous driving vehicle in 2022.
This report will focus primarily on the Geely Auto Group, with some discussion on Volvo Cars.
FY 2018 NEV Credit/Corporate Average Fuel Consumption Credit of OEMs（Aug. 2019）
China NEV Alliances（Aug. 2019）
Auto Shanghai 2019：Geely, Great Wall, BYD, Chery, Zotye, JAC（Jun. 2019）
2018 China market: 28.081M units for new car sales, 23.71M units for passenger cars（Feb. 2019）
Geely：Launching new LYNK & CO brand in 2017, sales target of 2 million units in 2020（May 2017）