At a time when Tesla CEO Elon Musk struggles to take his company private, Nio, a Chinese manufacturer of premium elected vehicles, filed to go public in a stock offering that could raise as much as $1.8 billion.
Nio, whose Chinese name translates as “Blue Sky Coming,” began making deliveries in June of its first electric car, the ES8. The company is planning to introduce a lower-cost SUV next year and more models in subsequent years.
In the first half of 2018, Nio reported less than $7 million in revenue and net loss of $503 million. The automaker said that it had delivered 481 ES8 vehicles through July and had “unfulfilled reservations” for more than 17,000 electric vehicles.
Musk, meanwhile, has been expressing his interest in delisting Tesla from the U.S. stock market, after chafing under the pressures of increasing production in a public market. On Monday, Musk wrote on Tesla’s blog that a Saudi sovereign wealth fund approached him about helping to take Tesla private.
Nio’s filing listed Tesla as one of its key competitors. Tesla is investing $5 billion in a new production facility in China, which will be its first outside the U.S.
China is the world’s largest passenger vehicle market. According to Frost & Sullivan, battery-powered electric vehicle sales are expected to increase by more than 40% a year in the country through 2022.