Geely

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Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co., Ltd
Holding company
Industry Automotive
Founded Taizhou, China (1986)
Founder Li Shufu
Headquarters 1760 Jiangling Road, Binjiang District, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China
Number of locations
China
Area served
Worldwide
Key people
Li Shufu (Chairman)
Yang Jian (President)
Products Automobiles, motorcycles, engines, transmissions
Revenue Decrease RMB 21,738,358,000 (USD 3.3 billion), 2014[1]
Decrease RMB 1,449,128,000 (USD 220 million), 2014[1]
Number of employees
18,481[1]
Subsidiaries
Website geely.com
Geely
Simplified Chinese 吉利控股集团
Traditional Chinese 吉利控股集團

Geely (officially Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co., Ltd) is a Chinese multinational automotive manufacturing company headquartered in Hangzhou, China. Its principal products are automobiles, taxis, motorcycles, engines, and transmissions. It sells passenger cars under the Geely and Volvo brands and taxis under the London Taxi brand.[2]

Geely has owned the Swedish passenger car maker Volvo Cars since 2010, when it acquired the company from Ford. It has owned the British taxi maker The London Taxi Company since 2012.

Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd (Chinese: 吉利汽车; pinyin: Jílì Qìchē) (SEHK0175), a subsidiary of Geely, is listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.[3]

Name

Geely (Chinese: 吉利; pinyin: Jílì) means "auspicious" or "lucky" in Mandarin Chinese.[4]

History

Founding Geely in 1986 as a refrigerator maker with money borrowed from family,[4] Li Shufu transformed the company into a successful private automaker selling inexpensive products to Chinese consumers.[5] A pioneer private Chinese automaker, in 2003 it remained the only domestic car manufacturer to lack ties to the Chinese state,[6] although another indigenous, politically independent automaker, BYD Auto, was rising around this time.[7] (Great Wall Motors may be considered another Chinese automaker less burdened with ties to the state.[7])

This Geely LC (sold as the Geely Panda in China) sports the "cross" trim level.

After the purchase of a failing, state-run firm,[8] Geely manufactured motorcycles in the mid-1990s.[9] Small van production began in 1998,[10] and a year later, Geely received state approval to manufacture automobiles.[10] Car production began in 2002.[5] The company had its IPO on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 2004.[3]

Between 2006 and 2008, Geely expressed its desire to sell in the EU and United States markets,[citation needed] and in pursuit of this goal,[citation needed] presented at the 2005 Frankfurt Motor Show.[11] It followed with a 2006 showing at the Detroit auto show.[4] Export to the EU and United States was postponed, but the company has recently started EU sales.

Geely approached Ford in mid-2008 about a possible takeover of Volvo Cars. On October 28, 2009, Geely was named as the preferred buyer of Volvo by the American automaker.[12] A deal was reached in late March and completed in early August, 2010.[13]

In 2010, total sales of over 415,000 units gave the company a near 2% market share.[14] Sales were lower than a reported 680,000 units per year production capacity.[15]

In December 2011, it was announced that Geely would begin selling Chinese-designed and -manufactured cars in the United Kingdom at the end of 2012, with the first model to go on sale being the Emgrand EC7.[16][17] The company has also stated its intention to begin sales in Italy.[18]

Operations

Research and development

In 2007, Geely applied for approximately 120 intellectual property rights. One-third were patents and two-thirds were utility models. In comparison to patents, utility models are cheaper and less research-intensive. Since 2005, the patent and utility model applications nearly doubled. From 2005 to 2006, it quintupled.[19]

Production facilities

Part of an assembly line at a Geely plant in Ningbo, China, can be seen here.

Headquartered in Hangzhou, Zhejiang, Geely has production bases in Lanzhou, Gansu (completed in 2006,[20] Geely construction in the region continued as of August 2010[21] either for expanding the existing facility[20] or for a new semi-complete knock-down factory[22]); Xiangtan, Hunan;[23] an unnamed location 40 minutes south of Shanghai;[24] Jinan, Shandong province;[20] and at Linhai, Luqiao, and Ningbo, in Zhejiang.[3]

As of 2011, two Volvo manufacturing plants were planned in Daqing and Chengdu,[25] and work on a transmissions-making factory in Tongliang, Chongqing had been initiated.[26]

At least four overseas factories assemble Geely models[27] probably from semi-complete or complete knock-down kits.[citation needed] Such facilities are or have been located in Indonesia,[27] (some of its production has been imported back to China),[28] Sri Lanka (in collaboration with Micro Cars),[29][30] Malaysia,[27] Russia, (assembly is controlled by local firm Derways),[31] and Ukraine.[27] These locations are not necessarily affiliated with or owned by Geely.

Manganese Bronze

Establishing a joint venture with this British maker of London Black Cabs in 2007, Geely purchased Manganese Bronze Holdings, now trading as The London Taxi Company, in 2013.[32]

The joint venture, Shanghai LTI Automobile Components Co Ltd, made the TX4, a licensed London Black Cab,[33] in Fengjing, Shanghai,[34] and exported semi-complete knock-down kits for assembly in the UK.[33]

Drivetrain Systems International

In 2009, Geely bought Drivetrain Systems International Pty Ltd,[35] a global transmission developer headquartered in Australia.

Products

Passenger cars

Geely sells passenger cars under two marques: Geely and, through its Swedish Volvo Cars subsidiary, Volvo.[36] Some Geely passenger cars include engine technology from Robert Bosch GmbH[37] and seat belts from Autoliv.[38]

Many of Geely's early products were based on the Xiali TJ7300, a variant of the 1987 Daihatsu Charade. Models such as the Haoqing (豪情) (five-door), Merrie (美日) (five-door), Uliou (优利欧) (four-door), and Urban Nanny (van and pick-up truck) have Charade bases, but feature a more prominent chromed grille.[citation needed]

A sense of humor imbues the names of some Geely vehicles. One sedan is called the "King Kong", and an early model was named You Li Ou,[5] a play on words that means "better than the Tianjin Xiali or the Buick Sail", two of its competitors.[39]

Geely marque products

A Geely MK/LG King Kong

Geely marque products include:

Discontinued brands

Geely has sold cars under at least three separate brands and may have continued to use the brand name of a purchased company for a short time. The Emgrand, Englon, and Gleagle names were phased out in 2014[41] alongside efforts to reduce sprawl,[42] and the Shanghai Maple brand name was discontinued in 2010.[43]

Emgrand

Emgrand (Chinese: 帝豪品牌; pinyin: dì háo pǐnpái) was launched in 2009 as a medium to high-end luxury brand.[44]

Products sold under the Emgrand brand included:

Englon
An Englon SC5-RV

Launched in 2010[46] and replacing the Shanghai Maple brand,[43] the company claimed Englon (Chinese: 英伦; pinyin: yīng lún) emulated classic, British style, and its model line included a TX4 sold on the Chinese market.[47] Some of its cars were built by Geely subsidiary Shanghai LTI.[48]

Gleagle
Here, the former Gleagle logo can be seen on a Geely LC, which also sold under that brand name.

Gleagle (Chinese: 全球鹰; pinyin: quánqiú yīng) is touted as an entry-level brand.[49]

Some Gleagle cars, such as the Gleagle Panda, were available for sale on the Internet in China via the Taobao Mall, a popular e-commerce site.[50][51] While Geely would deliver the car to the customer's address, buying one of the Panda models on offer did necessitate a trip to a traditional dealer.[52]

Products sold under the Gleagle brand included:

A Gleagle GC7

Gleagle products include:

Shanghai Maple

This brand name was affiliated with Shanghai Maple Automobile, a Geely subsidiary established in 1999.[56] It was replaced by the Englon brand in 2010.[43]

Products sold under the Shanghai Maple brand included:

Motorcycles

Geely manufactures a number of motor scooters and motorcycles from 50 to 250 cc displacement.

Dealer network

Geely refers to its dealer network as 4S stores and also sells some models online.[52] In 2014, it had a reported 900 retail outlets.[42]

Sales

A Geely MK in Singapore. 770 Geely cars were on Singaporean roads in 2010.[58]

In addition to China, Geely vehicles are sold in Australia,[59] Brazil,[60] Bahrain,[61] Chile,[62] Colombia,[63] Costa Rica,[64] Egypt,[65] Indonesia,[66] Iran,[67] Kuwait,[68] Nepal,[69] New Zealand,[70] Nigeria,[71] Oman,[72] Pakistan, Romania,[73] Russia,[74] Saudi Arabia,[75] South Africa,[76] Syria,[77] Taiwan,[78] Turkey,[79] Ukraine,[80] Uruguay,[81] and Venezuela.[82] In a number of markets, Geely vehicles are assembled in local factories from complete knock-down kits.

Cuba's government has purchased a considerable number of Geely vehicles, and they are pressed into service as police patrol cars[8] or tourist taxis throughout Havana.[83][84]

In 2010, Geely surpassed its projected 400,000-vehicle sales target for the year selling 415,286 units[85] of its 680,000 units/year production capacity,[35] prompting the company to set its 2011 sales target at 480,000, a 16% increase.[85] That year, 15,596,100 units (7,793,600 passenger vehicles) were sold in China,[86] giving Geely a 2.66% market share. Geely has announced its ambitions to double its market share in China to 5.8% by 2015.[87]

Safety record

A small Geely sedan, the CK, performed badly in an informal crash test conducted by a Russian magazine in 2007.[88] As a result, Geely reviewed its global export plans.[89] A 2009 1.3-liter Geely CK 1 model without airbags earned a zero-star rating in a Latin-NCAP crash test on protecting adult occupants in front seats.[90]

In 2010, the Geely LC scored 45.3 points of a possible 51 in the China-NCAP crash tests, making it China's first locally researched and developed mini car to be awarded a 5-star rating,[91] and the safest Chinese hatchback[92] as of 2011.[93]

In 2011, the Geely Emgrand EC7 earned a 4-star rating in a Euro-NCAP crash test.[94]

Controversies

Some Geely models have received criticism for closely resembling those of other manufacturers.

In Western media, the Geely GE has received such opprobrium for looking like a Rolls-Royce[95] and the LC, a Citroën C1 produced since 2005 (or even a Toyota Aygo[96]).

An unsuccessful lawsuit was brought against the company in the early 2000s by Toyota, which claimed Geely had "implied in ads that some of the parts [used in Geely vehicles] were made by Toyota".[97] Geely may also have used a logo that resembled that of Toyota.[98]

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External links