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Tesla rival Xpeng to go public on the New York Stock Exchange under ticker 'XPEV'

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  • XPEV
  • TSLA

Brian Gu, Xpeng President & Vice Chairman, joins Yahoo Finance’s The First Trade with Alexis Christoforous and Brian Sozzi from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange to discuss the company's initial public offering.

Video Transcript

ALEXIS CHRISTOFOROUS: There's a new electric car player hitting the public markets today. China-based Xpeng will start trading any minute now on the New York Stock Exchange. It is a direct competitor to Tesla, selling electric cars with self-driving options. The company's President and Vice Chairman, Brian Good, joins us now from Hong Kong. So good to have you here, and congratulations on the IPO. You raised $1 and 1/2 billion through this offering, more than initially planned. That's a lot [AUDIO OUT], Brian. What are your plans for that cash that you're raising?

BRIAN GU: Well, obviously, with funding, we can explore a lot of opportunities . As a company, we pride ourselves with the focus on R&D, especially in the smart capabilities, which includes autonomous driving, small cockpit, voice control and connectivity. So we're going to continue to invest in those areas. At the same time, we'll have to develop our brand, as well as sales marketing network. As a young company, we're still a long way to go compared to big brands like Tesla and others in China. And also, I think we will then aim to build a better service and charging network that can actually better provide comfort and certainty to our drivers.

BRIAN SOZZI: Brian, Tesla is reportedly a few weeks away from developing or revealing a million mile battery. And your company pours a lot into R&D. Do you think that million mile battery will be the new standard bearer in the electric car industry? And do have something like that in the works as well?

BRIAN GU: Well, we're all waiting to see what Tesla is going to come out with battery day. As a company, we actually don't make our battery cells, unlike Tesla. We work with leading players in China, like CATL. They're a good partner, and we take their batteries cells. Actually, we do a lot of customization on the packing and BMS front.

So for us, obviously we love to work with the best in class technology from the cell manufacturers. So if they are cooler technology that provides safer, cost efficient, better cells, then we'd love to work with them. So I think we would look forward to see the rapid development in battery technology, which will drive the growth of overall industry.

ALEXIS CHRISTOFOROUS: Can you talk briefly about what it's like going public in a US market at a time when there are such tensions happening between the US and China? I mean, you are one of 20 companies that has gone public on a US market this year. But what has it been like, that experience for your company?

BRIAN GU: The experience actually been very positive the US market still is the deepest pool of capital with the most sophisticated investors. And also, the US regulatory system is still the most efficient for us to access in this market. So I think again, obviously, we all aware of geopolitical risks, which I think will cause very volatile markets, for sure. But I think as a company, having the right partners as your investors, as well as how the stock market actually can support your long-term growth is important. So we're actually balancing and making that decision as we decide on which market to access.