Our reporter He Fang Intern Du Qiaomei reports from Beijing
Although the schedule for putting into operation at the end of this year is not too early in the new forces of automobile manufacturing, it is just the right time. It is the most important for the new force of car-making to launch the best products, and the quality of products can not be compromised.
On March 4, 2019, Dai Lei, CEO and co-founder of Baiton, which has been in China for three years, said in an exclusive interview with 21st Century Economic Report.
Faced with the challenge from other new automobile manufacturers and the pressure from traditional automobile companies in Chinas new energy automobile market, the German, who is fluent in Chinese, still polishes his products in an orderly manner and follows his own road of automobile production step by step.
In his opinion, instead of being a Tesla in China, Baiten wants to achieve real differentiation.
Take the first step in car building
21st Century Economic Report (hereinafter referred to as 21st Century): After Baiton purchased Wallys qualification, it solved the problem of production qualification. Why did Hualis qualifications in Tianjin be transferred to Nanjing?
Daley: The acquisition of Wally is the first step in automobile manufacturing and an important part of our strategic cooperation with FAW. We will start production at the end of this year, so its very important to get approval. Next, we need to coordinate with the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology related work, the relevant processes are well communicated with the corresponding departments, all work can be fully guaranteed to complete in accordance with the schedule.
21st Century: How to see the impact of new investment policies on new forcescar-building?
Daley: We have a larger strategic cooperation framework with FAW. There are other important layouts, including cooperation in more areas. Relevant departments with the New Deal are mainly the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology. Our previous work has been propelled by the existing policies in a completely rational manner.
21st Century: As a typical case of cooperation between traditional automobile companies and new automobile manufacturers, what is the original intention of Heyi FAW?
Dai Lei: As a strategic shareholder of Baiteng B-round financing, FAW is not only a financial investment, but also a strategic consideration. Our cooperation not only stays in the field of investment, but also has a lot of cooperation in business. Both sides are very sympathetic to the future industry, products and technology development.
21st Century: Can you talk about Baitons next financing plan and listing plan?
Daley: Baiton is currently in the C round of financing, and the target is to be completed by the middle of this year. This years target is to launch the model in the fourth quarter, and the next step is to consider the IPO.
21st Century: Baiteins previous rounds of financing accumulated about $800 million. What do you think of the saying that the threshold for car building is 20 billion RMB?
Dai Lei: More than $800 million is Baitons equity investment. There are many different sources of capital. At present, financing is very smooth, not 100% equity financing. Baiteng landed in Nanjing with the support and assistance of the local government; besides, it has also developed a number of different financing channels. At present, no matter Nanjing or Jiangsu Province, the ideas, ideas and specific actions of the new energy field to become a landmark industry are very powerful. Baitein not only needs to do a good job in one enterprise, but also set up the whole industry and the whole ecosystem in the future.
21st Century: What are Bayerns future plans for mobile travel?
Daley: This must be done. Great changes are taking place in the automotive industry in the past 100 years. In the next five to 10 years, there will be disruptive changes in the field of travel, including mobile travel, unmanned driving and intelligence. Battens products should fully support travel services. From the beginning of the design, the products considered sharing, not as a car service, but as a personal sharing, to obtain personalized experience. A new model of mobile travel will be introduced in the future, but Baiton cant do another trickle. In high-end areas, there are many innovative areas for future smart cities and travel services. We should work closely with some local governments to maximize the interests of society and explore some new models.
Year of product landing
21st Century: Beyond the opening of Shanghai Experience Store and CES, what is Baitens plan for this year?
Dai Lei: Batten released the interior design of mass-produced cars on CES, and mass-produced interiors retained all the bright spots, such as large screen and steering wheel touch screen. At present, all the moulds have been made, all the accessories have been determined, and the mass-production stage has begun.
This year is the year that Bayern products came into the market. This is a crucial year for Baiton. In 2018, Baiteng has produced hundreds of prototype cars for testing. This year, the four major factories have been built. The equipment will be installed in April and May of this year, and will be put into operation by the end of the year. R&D, supply chain, manufacturing and quality departments will focus on product launch.
Although the start-up schedule at the end of this year is not too early in the new forces of car-making, it is just the right time. It is the most important for the new forces to launch the best products. The quality of products can not be compromised.
Battens platform fully meets the requirements of China, North America and Europe. In the early stage, it also did a lot of work to enter the U.S. and European markets, including sales network, after-sales strategy and so on. So we are very confident that we can be the first successful passenger car brand from China to enter the American and European markets. And at CES, we received a lot of attention and comments from the core media in the United States and Europe.
At present, Batten has more than 50,000 customers, half of them at home and half abroad. It is currently planned to launch products in the United States and Europe in the second half of 2020.
21st Century: What do you think about the outside worlds doubts about the new forcescapacity and quality in the delivery phase?
Daley: Industrialization is a core competitiveness. From the first batch of prototype cars to the actual production, it takes several months to do a good job of products and processes step by step, to achieve better quality. We believe that the definition of putting into production is that the product has reached a very mature level and can start mass production. Battens definition of putting into operation at the end of this year is that sales will increase rapidly from January next year. The new brand only has one chance, the first batch of users experience is not good, it is difficult to adjust later, the positive brand building depends on the word-of-mouth marketing of the first batch of users.
21st Century: Does Baitons three-power system mainly come from China now?
Daley: Batten has a very high degree of localization. First, the battery pack is designed by the team itself. The battery comes from Ningde era. Nanjing factory has a workshop to paint the battery pack and provide modular batteries. This is completely localized. Ningde era is also our investor and strategic partner. Secondly, the motor is mature in terms of performance and quality in cooperation with Bosch. Third, the battery management system and electronic control are mainly made by Baiten himself.
21st Century: How to view the challenges from other new automobile manufacturers and traditional automobile companies?
Daley: Actually, the real challenge Bayern faces is mainly from the traditional car companies. At present, the market cake is not tens of thousands, but 25 million users of fuel vehicles, so we need to take the traditional car companies into consideration in our competition. In recent years, under the influence of the new forces of Chinas automobile manufacturing, the global traditional automobile enterprises have begun a large number of transformation, in 2019 or 2020 will be introduced in succession some electric vehicles.
The pure electric vehicle of traditional automobile enterprises is basically based on its traditional body and the electrification of traditional platforms. It is not completely personalized and customized to develop a new platform. For the traditional car companies, the technology of electric vehicles is not particularly difficult. Once they really make up their minds to build electric vehicles, they will produce very good products. Therefore, the core competitiveness of new car makers is not necessarily the three-power system. From the first day of Baitons founding, we know that the real difference between ourselves and other electric vehicles must be intellectualization. We hope to truly bring new experience to users through intellectualization. From the UI point of view, we should pay special attention to the change of human-computer interaction methods, user experience and screen content.
21st Century: So you dont think Batten is the second Tesla?
Daley: Baiton doesnt want to be a Tesla in China. What he wants to achieve is real differentiation. There are three major advantages of BYT products: the first is safety, which must be developed according to the highest German standards. Whether it is process quality or safety, it can compete with BBA. The second is design. The third point is the level of intellectualization. We hope that Baitons car will become a real intelligent device. Whether compared with the new forces or the traditional car companies, Bayern is still very competitive in terms of intellectualization.
21st Century: What do you think of the demand of Chinese users for intelligent cars?
Daley: First, its localized in China. Baitein will not only develop in the Chinese market, but also enter the markets of North America and Europe at the same time. But in China, success must understand localization, whether it is the needs of users, team management, brand must achieve localization. Secondly, the brand that can compete with BBA really must be a global brand. Most excellent brands have been positioned as global brands from the beginning. So Batten is a company rooted in China and an international brand, and this model has been recognized by many people.
In order to understand the needs of Chinese consumers for intelligent manufacturing, Batten launched the Zhi Jiao Guan project last year, which is to select some users and some media friends from the scheduled customers to have face-to-face exchanges with the engineers of Batten, especially the designers of the intelligent user interface.
(Editor: Zhou Kaiping)
Source: Liable Editor of 21st Century Economic Report: Yao Liwei_NT6056