While there are other players who will rely on low prices to compete for market share, CATL has the lowest costs and highest reliability of supply, it said.
Shares of Chinese power battery giant Contemporary Amperex Technology Co Ltd (CATL) have fallen about 20 percent over the past two months, a period in which a series of rumors have fueled nervousness among many investors. The company responded to key concerns during a recent investor communication.
While there are other players who will rely on low prices to compete for market share, CATL (SHE: 300750) has the lowest cost and highest reliability of supply, local media Cailian said today, citing the company's chairman Robin Zeng in a meeting minutes.
Carmakers should not take the risk of supply chain volatility in order to get a small discount when developing strategies for their electrification transition, CATL said, according to the report.
"Bringing in multiple suppliers is the normal choice for car companies with more than 1 million units in sales," Zeng said.
Underlying CATL's innovation is the company's massive data collection and computing platform with high computing power, something second-tier players don't have, according to the minutes of the meeting.
Previous rumors have suggested that CATL was seeking advice from professional bodies in the US about the possibility of its being sanctioned. CATL denied it on February 8, calling them untrue.
CATL's only current dependence on the US is the chip in the BMS, but that chip can be produced on a 28 nm process, Zeng said, adding that Chinese technology already has the capability to produce alternative chips.
CATL will enter the US and is now in talks with US car companies and energy storage customers, he said, adding that the ideal scenario would be to build plants in Mexico or Canada.
Zeng also communicated the thinking behind the company's entry into the battery swap space, saying the move is aimed at a market with low electric vehicle penetration in the RMB 80,000-120,000 price range.
For these models, the price can be as low as RMB 70,000 when batteries are not included, while the monthly cost of battery leasing is about the same as the cost of refueling and replacing batteries about as fast as refueling, according to the minutes of the meeting.
CATL is not only a company engaged in manufacturing, but can also be a service platform for the new energy industry, according to the minutes.
CATL said it has sufficient supply in response to the continuing rise in the price of lithium, a key raw material for batteries.
CATL can't do anything about the short-term increase in raw material prices, but in the long term, new capacity will be released in 1.5-2 years, according to the minutes.
CATL's stock traded in Shenzhen has fallen about 25 percent in the past two months through Friday.
On February 13, CATL said a series of malicious rumors on online platforms about CATL being sanctioned by the US, being removed from the ChiNext weighted stock index, and the failure of negotiations with Tesla, which triggered a market misunderstanding, had been reported to the police.
The company's shares rose 3.68 percent on Monday and they were up another 3.82 percent as of the close of Tuesday's morning trading.