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Buffett-Backed BYD’s Profit Surges as Electric-Car Sales Recover

(Bloomberg) — BYD Co. third-quarter earnings surged, with the Warren Buffett-backed automaker benefiting from recovering electric-car demand in China and surging sales at its new face-mask business.

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Net income rose to 1.75 billion yuan ($260 million) in the three months through September from about 120 million yuan a year earlier, the Shenzhen-based company said in a statement late Thursday. Sales increased 41% to 44.5 billion yuan. Profit exceeded the 1.66 billion yuan the company had in the first half.

Key Insights

Car buyers are returning to showrooms as the coronavirus pandemic eases in China, and electric-vehicle demand in particular is rebounding as drivers go for more environmentally friendly autos. New BYD models such as the Han and Tang DM are helping it compete for EV market leadership in China, with rivals such as Tesla Inc. and NIO Inc. also seeing sales rise.BYD, in which Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. has held a stake since 2008, is also reaping the rewards from swiftly expanding to face-mask production after the virus broke out.Shares of BYD have more than quadrupled this year to a record, making it China’s largest carmaker by market value.

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