World’s biggest electric-vehicle battery maker soars on trading debut

Shares of the world’s biggest maker of electric-vehicle batteries jumped on their trading debut as investors bet on rising demand for new-energy cars worldwide.

Contemporary Amperex Technology Ltd. rose by the maximum 44 percent to 36.20 yuan in Shenzhen, China, valuing the company at about $12.3 billion. The manufacturer sold a 10 percent stake at 25.14 yuan a share in its initial public offering on May 30. Investors are confident that CATL, as the company is known, can fend off rivals including Panasonic Corp. and continue to win orders as automakers move toward electric vehicles. CATL, whose customers include Volkswagen AG, had reduced the size of its IPO by more than half compared with its original ambitions because of declining margins and a cap imposed by Chinese authorities on price-earnings ratios in IPOs.

While CATL is the biggest manufacturer of batteries when including all electric-vehicle types, Panasonic is the largest maker of batteries for the narrower category of regular-sized electric cars, also known as highway capable passenger electric vehicles.