This photo from Dec. 2019 shows robotic arms spray painting a car body shell at the BYD Automobile Company Limited Xi’an plant. BYD is set to supply Tesla with batteries “very soon,” a senior company executive told a Chinese state media anchor.
Yuan Jingzhi | Visual China Group | Getty Images
“We’re now good friends also with Elon Musk, because we’re preparing to supply batteries to [Tesla] very soon,” BYD Vice President Lian Yubo said during an interview with Chinese state media anchor Kate Kui.
BYD and Tesla did not immediately respond to CNBC’s requests for comment.
Rechargeable batteries and photovoltaic (the conversion of light from the sun to electricity) made up 7.29% of BYD’s revenue pool in 2021, dwarfed by the more than 50% share taken up by automobiles and related products, according to the company’s latest annual report.
Hong Kong-listed shares of BYD jumped 2.79% on Wednesday, mirroring broader positive sentiment in tech as the Hang Seng Tech index advanced 4.76% to 4,818.36. Shares of other Chinese EV makers in Hong Kong also rose, with Nio up 5.07% while Xpeng surged 6.13%.
Mainland-listed shares of Chinese battery maker and Tesla supplier Contemporary Amperex Technology (CATL) plunged more than 7% during Wednesday trading before bouncing back to close 0.218% higher. CATL had roughly 25% of global EV battery market share in 2020, far ahead of BYD’s 7%, according to Nomura research.
Elsewhere in Asia, shares of Panasonic in Japan dipped 0.78% while South Korea’s LG Energy Solution dropped 1.5%. Both companies also supply batteries to Tesla.
— CNBC’s Evelyn Cheng contributed to this report.