WM Motor to accelerate growth with billions in bank credit
Shanghai-based electric-car startup WM Motor is set to receive 3.5 billion yuan (US$540 million) in credit from 11 different Shanghai banks, the automaker announced on Tuesday.
According to the company's plan, the funds will primarily be used for operations and layout related to products and customer services, including intelligent manufacturing, technology research and development, an innovative service model, channel expansion and digital marketing.
Company officials said WM will partner with banks in supply chain and auto finance.
Established in 2015, WM was one of the electric startups and has two electric sport-utility vehicles currently in mass production. Its competitors include NIO, Xpeng and Li Auto.
Shanghai and Qingpu District government officials attended the signing ceremony (the company is headquartered in Qingpu).
Zhang Jianming, vice director of the Shanghai Commission of Economy and Informatization, said the government hopes WM will develop technology to benefit the public, establish a responsible corporate image, strengthen research and development and provide smarter and more convenient mobility experiences for car buyers.
Freeman Shen, WM's founder and chief executive officer, said the agreement reflects support from the Shanghai government and the country's financial sector for the new-energy vehicle industry.
The agreement brings the amount of support the company will receive from Chinese banks to 11.5 billion yuan.
According to the Shanghai Stock Exchange, WM has met the application requirements for listing on the STAR Market.
Company officials said WM's third electric car — the W6 — will debut at the upcoming Shanghai Auto Show in April.
The W6 is a self-driving sport utility vehicle that is a car model produced in collaboration with Baidu.
WM joined forces with Baidu to create new designs in electronic and electrical architecture, gateways, domain controllers, voice interaction and scene-based experience.
In 2020, WM Motor sold 22,495 cars, a year-on-year increase of 33.3 percent.