BYD releases last year’s profit report, and it falls a little short

Chinese EV giant BYD just released its 2023 annual profit report, and it looks like it missed analyst estimates by a smidge, netting $4.16 billion (30.04 billion yuan) compared to the estimated $4.29 billion (30.94 billion yuan). Still, the company reported a more than 80% rise in net profit last year, so it is showing no signs of slowing down.

According to annual figures released today, BYD reported an 18.6% rise in fourth-quarter profit, its slowest since the first quarter of 2022, reports Reuters, likely due to the price war that started heating up late last year.

Net profit totaled 8.67 billion yuan ($1.20 billion) in the fourth quarter, on a 15.1% jump in revenue to 180.04 billion yuan. For the whole of 2023, the new-energy automobile maker saw net profit increase 80.7% to 30.04 billion yuan, Reuters reports.

In late January, the Shenzhen-based automaker flagged a preliminary profit forecast of 29 billion yuan to 31 billion yuan.

BYD famously overtook Tesla in the last quarter of last year to become the world’s largest seller of EVs, but Bloomberg reports that the Lunar New Year holiday in China could likely prevent the company from holding the title for the first three months of this year, in that its sales are concentrated in China.

In total, BYD sold 3.02 million electric and hybrid vehicles last year, including 942,000 in the final quarter to meet its annual target. BYD alone sold 1.6 million fully battery-electric vehicles last year, coming close to Tesla’s 1.8 million overall BEV sales.

This year, the automaker has made some aggressive price cuts in China, slashing prices on its range to lure drivers from gas-powered cars to EVs. Its marketing slogan is that “new era of electricity is cheaper than oil.” 

BYD has cut prices on more than 100 of its existing models since the end of last year, while also relaunching new 70 model trims with reduced prices. The Seagull hatchback, for example, sells for 69,800 yuan, or less than $10,000, inciting fear across the industry.

BYD is also currently expanding its presence in Europe by launching its best-selling Atto 3 and Seal in Greece, with more models coming soon. The company plans to triple its share in the EV market in Europe by 2025.


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