The chairmen of Bergé y Cía. and Build Your Dreams (BYD) signed an agreement yesterday, in the Chinese city of Shenzhen, for the distribution of electric and hybrid vehicles in Spain, evidence that both companies are clearly committed to find transportation alternatives towards sustainable mobility.
Bergé Automoción, Bergé y Cía’s automobile division, was established in Spain in 1979 and began its international expansion in 2000. It is currently the largest private automobile distributor in Spain and Latin America. Representing a total of 29 brands (between distribution and retail sales), the company is present in Spain, Portugal, Poland, Chile, Argentina, Peru and Mexico.
BYD is a world reference in rechargeable battery manufacturing for different applications. The company began operating in the vehicle sector in 2002 and is currently one of China’s most important manufacturers, with monthly sales in the domestic market of over 30,000 units.
The first step taken in this new business venture was BYD’s participation in the Movele Project, including the addition of the F3DM and e6 models to the catalogue of electric vehicles published by the Spanish Ministry of Industry, Tourism and Trade. The MOVELE project is focused on supporting the introduction of 2.000 electric vehicles in Spanish cities in a two-year period (2009 and 2010), as well as the development of the necessary infrastructures.
Bergé Automoción and BYD are studying the possibility of expanding their collaboration to new business areas, such as recharging stations, logistics and maintenance associated with battery distribution, as well as the mass storage of electricity in batteries for use in the renewable energy industry.
The importance of BYD’s automobile division
BYD’s automobile division (BYD AUTO) was established in 2002, when the company acquired the “Tsinchuan Automobile Company”.
BYD’s electric vehicle department was created in 2003 and soon launched its first electric model, the Flyer BEV which included Li-ion batteries. In 2006, the company created the “Electric Vehicle Institute”, focused on the development of electric vehicles based on “Fe batteries” and the combination of this system with other types of propulsion (“Dual Mode” or hybrid vehicles). This type of battery has been proven to be safer and more affordable.
BYD Auto has two manufacturing plants (in Xi and Shenzhen), a Research and Development centre in Shanghai and a manufacturing and stamping plant in Beijing, supplier to various international vehicle manufacturers. The company also has a parts manufacturing plant in Huizhou.
Today, BYD Auto currently has the capacity to manufacture more than 300,000 units annually and its objective is to become the largest Chinese vehicle manufacturer by 2015.
BYD was established in 1985 and is currently divided into nine business areas, including: Nickel Batteries; Li-ion Batteries; Network Power Systems (systems for energy networks: storage and distribution), Mechanical elements (parts production for mobile telephony and computer products), LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) and LCM (Liquid Crystal Module) panel production; Flexible printed circuits for computers, mobile telephones and DVD readers; Optic electronic products: Microelectronics and Automobile products.
The company has production centres in the five continents, with a total surface area of 7 million square metres and more than 130,000 employees.
BYD also has an internationally renowned strategic partner, Warren Buffet, who, through his company Berkshire Hathaway acquired 10% of the company for a total of $230M last year.
Currently, BYD is the world’s largest manufacturer of rechargeable, mainly Li-ion, batteries. According to statistics, 17% of the world’s population uses a product manufactured by BYD on a daily basis and 25% of the world’s mobile telephones use batteries manufactured by BYD.