Nio (NIO) is expanding its footprint into Norway, its first overseas destination away from China. The company intends to establish a robust ecosystem in the country comprising cars, services, and digital experiences. It also plans to build its lifestyle brand and community.
As part of the expansion, ES8, the company’s flagship electric SUV, is to make its much-awaited debut in the European nation. Plans are also underway to introduce the ET7 smart electric flagship sedan in 2022. The sale of the cars will be supported by a massive sale and service network that the company intends to establish.
Nio plans to set up its “charging and swapping system” in Norway as part of a broader plan. The company should have battery swap stations connecting five major cities and freeways by the end of next year. (See Nio stock analysis on TipRanks).
Nio has already partnered with two Norwegian artists that will support its lifestyle brand, Nio Life. As part of the collaboration, the company will launch its first collection in Norway and China.
“From its founding, NIO’s vision is to be a global brand with high-quality products and services to the users worldwide. Norway is a sustainable and innovative country and resonates with our vision,” said CEO William Li.
Additionally, Nio has selected Karl Johans Gate in Oslo to be home to its first NIO House outside China. The expansion drive will result in the establishment of four new centers in Bergen, Stavanger, Trondheim, and Kristiansand.
The expansion into Europe has already caught the attention of Mizuho Securities analyst Vijay Rakesh. The analyst maintains a Buy rating on the stock following the company’s stable deliveries in 1Q.
“NIO noted its strategic rollout in Europe will not be focused on volume initially, but towards customer experience and brand recognition alongside infrastructure build-out with battery swap as a service. We believe UK/US rollouts will likely be a longer-term story,” Rakesh stated.
The analyst has a $65 price target on the stock, implying 77.21% upside potential to current levels.
Consensus among analysts is a Moderate Buy based on 7 Buy and 3 Hold ratings. The average analyst price target of $60.04 implies 63.69% upside potential to current levels. NIO scores an 8 out of 10 on TipRanks’ Smart Score rating system, implying it is likely to outperform the overall market.