NIU’s Q4 2018 and end of year earnings reports were just released. They provide an excellent view into the financial stability of the company as well as its impressive growth. They also hint at NIU’s plans for further worldwide expansion, as the company seeks to maintain their position as one of the most innovative electric scooter companies in the world.
NIU is the largest electric scooter manufacturer in China and has been exporting their scooters to Europe for years.
Built with brand name components including Panasonic batteries and Bosch motors, NIU’s electric scooters are some of the most advanced scooters on the market.
While I hesitate to use the term “the Tesla of…” cliché, NIU really is leading the industry in terms of large production volume, advanced technology and impressively styled electric scooters.
They recently released a line of new scooters that are already receiving quite positive reviews from early riders.
NIU’s stock price has surged nearly 17% since the middle of last week ahead of their strong Q4 earnings report.
The report showed impressive growth for the relatively young company, which was founded in 2014.
NIU’s 2018 financial performance
NIU demonstrated a 77.9% increase in electric scooter sales volume and a 95% increase in total net revenues in Q4 2018 as compared to Q4 2017. Total net revenue was reported to be RMB 427.5 million.
The company’s yearly sales volume in 2018 increased 79.2% and total net revenue increased 92.1% compared to 2017. The total yearly net revenue was reported to be RMB 1,477.8 million.
The company’s gross margin for Q4 2018 was 13.5%, up from just 4.4% year over year.
NIU also decreased net losses to RMB 32 million, as compared to RMB 48.7 million in Q4 2017. The adjusted net loss (non-GAAP) for Q4 2018 was RMB 7.2 million, a large drop from RMB 27.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2017.
NIU’s 2018 operational performance
In 2018, NIU sold 93,611 electric scooters. That’s a 77.9% increase over 2017’s figures.
The company reached 760 franchised stores in China, which is by far its largest market. The company also increased its overseas sales network to 22 distributors covering 27 countries.
While the United States is still not among that list, company representatives have confirmed that NIU is in the final stages of DOT certification to introduce their electric scooters into the US.
NIU also completed an IPO on the NASDAQ last October.
In addition to the company’s expansion into the United States, NIU has apparently been working on a deal with Volkswagen in Germany.
According to the company:
We have recently entered into a definitive Development Collaboration Agreement with Volkswagen Group in Germany regarding joint development of Micro-mobility solutions. We value the opportunity to work with Volkswagen Group and believe such collaboration will bring long term benefit to both parties.
NIU is anticipating that the company’s current impressive growth will continue.
For the first quarter of 2019, NIU expects net revenues to be in the range of RMB 285 million to RMB 305 million, representing a year-over-year increase of 64.9% to 76.5%.
According to Dr. Yan Li, NIU’s Chief Executive Officer:
“Our performance in the quarter was impressive, especially considering that we were in a slower seasonal period. Solid demand for e-scooters combined with our expanded product portfolio and growing sales network drove volume growth at 78% and revenue growth at 95% year over year, well ahead of our initial guidance.”
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