Baidu-backed WM Motor seeking up to USD 1 billion in new funds, says founder

This time it’s looking to welcome international investors.

WM Motor, an electric vehicle startup backed by Baidu, is seeking up to USD 1 billion in its Series D funding round, according to the company’s founder Freeman Shen .

The Shanghai-based EV firm closed its Series C funding round with RMB 3 billion (USD 446 million) in March with Baidu leading other investors like Taihang Industrial Fund and Linear Venture.

This time, however, WM Motor is looking for more international investors to join. “We will be watching global investors,” Shen said in an interview with Bloomberg on Monday. In the past, Shen said, the firm only focused on Chinese investors.

WM Motor’s pivot to global investors coincides with decreasing governmental subsidies and increasing doubts and worries over EV safety.

Nio, one of WM Motor’s major domestic competitors, issued a recall of its flagship ES8 model last week after three fire incidents in the past two months.