华安证券表示，电池企业首先受益上游材料价格下降带来的毛利率提升，“锂矿返利”对头部电池企业的影响较小。材料端，该行认为电解液价格有望率先触底，随着部分产能出清，单位盈利有望在一季度触底反弹。负极企业一月份单吨净利降幅较大，头部厂商 3 月份已环比回升，预计负极行业整体盈利有望在二季度见底回升。华安证券建议关注：一产能释放、成本压力缓解毛利回升电池厂;二供需支撑锂价高位利润释放锂资源公司等;三格局优壁垒高的中游材料环节及新技术等。
The Zhitong Finance App learned that on March 21, Ningde Era revealed to the media that Kirin batteries, the leading technology of the Ningde era, had already been mass-produced. On the same day, some media also learned from Geely's Jikkrypton Auto that, as Kirin Battery's first mass-produced model in the world, Jikkrypton Motor's pure electric medium to large MPV Polkrypton 009 is expected to be delivered in the second quarter of this year, with a delay of about 1-2 months after Kirin Battery's mass production. Pacific Securities said that Kirin Battery opens a new pattern of smart electric vehicles. The recommendation is to focus on battery leaders and supporting materials/structural parts manufacturers.
According to the Ningde Era, the volume utilization rate of Kirin batteries exceeded 72%, the energy density of three-element cells could reach 255 Wh/kg, and the energy density of the lithium iron phosphate battery system could reach 160 Wh/kg. The degree of battery pack integration was the highest in the world. With the same chemical system and the same battery pack size, the battery capacity of the Kirin battery pack can be increased by 13% compared to the 4680 large cylindrical battery system. The vehicle can achieve a range of 1000 kilometers, and the charging/discharging ratio can reach 4C as fast as possible.
Regarding the delivery of Jikkrypton 009, Zhao Yuhui, vice president of Jikkrypton Intelligent Technology, said that since Jikkrypton 009 went on sale, order performance has exceeded expectations. At this stage, the delivery waiting period for the Kyokrypton 009 model equipped with Kirin batteries is expected to take 2-3 months, and every effort is being made to address the impact of the supply chain shortage of power batteries and some chips. On March 8, Ningde Times also stated on an interactive platform that Kirin Battery is expected to be mass-produced in the first quarter of 2023, and that Kirin Battery's first model is Kyokrypton 009.
Looking at the cost side, according to the news, according to data released by the Shanghai Steel Federation, prices for some lithium battery materials fell on March 21, with battery-grade lithium carbonate falling by 12,500 yuan/ton, with an average price of 300,000 yuan/ton. According to media reports, the industry is still selling lithium carbonate at an accelerated pace. The continuing decline in lithium carbonate prices has made downstream customers afraid to place big orders. The wait-and-see sentiment is serious. On the other hand, there have also been refunds in overseas markets. This in turn has further contributed to the decline in lithium carbonate prices.
Huaan Securities said that with the gradual release of production capacity in all aspects of midstream, high material prices are expected to gradually ease. At the same time, battery manufacturers negotiate prices with automakers and gradually establish a metal price linkage mechanism, which can effectively transfer some of the cost pressure. Battery manufacturers' gross margins are expected to rise, or they may usher in a favorable situation of sharp increases in volume and price.
Looking at the policy side, on March 20, in order to seize the high ground of the new energy storage industry and the frontier of industrial development, the General Office of the People's Government of Guangdong Province issued the “Guangdong Province's Guiding Opinions on Promoting the High-Quality Development of the New Energy Storage Industry”, which mentions focusing on improving lithium-ion battery technology; researching sodium-ion battery technology, etc. The opinion points out that by 2025, the revenue of the new energy storage industry in the province will reach 600 billion yuan, an average annual increase of more than 50%.
In promoting the growth of the new energy storage industry, the opinion mentioned that the regional layout of the lithium battery industry will be optimized. Combine conditions such as resource endowments, technological advantages, industrial base, human resources, etc., to support eligible cities to build national high-tech lithium battery industrialization bases. Accelerate construction of key projects such as Ruiqing Era, BYD, China Innovation Aviation, Yiwei Lithium Energy, Sunwoda, Penghui Energy, Puterai, and Betray, and actively introduce investment projects from leading lithium battery companies at home and abroad.
Furthermore, Guangdong Province will also accelerate the development of the sodium-ion energy storage battery industry. The opinion points out that the deployment of sodium-ion batteries will be accelerated, demonstration applications of sodium ion batteries will be supported in the fields of energy storage, electric two-wheelers, micro electric vehicles, 5G base stations, etc., and promote cooperation on sodium-ion battery energy storage projects in the Shaoguan data center cluster.
Huaan Securities said that battery companies first benefited from the increase in gross margin brought about by falling prices of upstream materials, and “lithium ore rebates” had little impact on leading battery companies. On the material side, the bank believes that electrolyte prices are expected to be the first to bottom out. As part of production capacity is cleared, unit profits are expected to bottom out in the first quarter. The net profit per ton of anode companies dropped significantly in January. Leading manufacturers have already rebounded month-on-month in March. It is expected that the overall profit of the anode industry will bottom out in the second quarter. Huaan Securities suggests focusing on: first, the release of production capacity and the easing of cost pressure to recover gross profit to battery factories; two, supply and demand to support high lithium prices and the release of profits from lithium resource companies, etc.; and three, the midstream materials chain and new technology with high barriers in a superior pattern and high barriers.
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Benefiting from Kirin battery mass production companies:
Luoyang Molybdenum (03993): The company will cooperate with Ningde Era to enter the lithium market in Bolivia. I believe this move will support the Group's good profit prospects.
Geely Automobile (00175): The company's Jikkrypton Auto's pure electric medium to large MPV Polkrypton 009 will be powered by Kirin batteries. This model is expected to be delivered in the second quarter of this year.
Leading lithium battery manufacturers:
Tianqi Lithium (09696): The company expects to achieve net profit of 23.1 billion yuan to 25.6 billion yuan in 2022, an increase of 1011.19% to 1131.45% over the previous year. The main reason was that the sales volume and average sales price of the company's main lithium products in 2022 increased significantly compared to 2021, benefiting from various positive factors such as the increase in global NEV boom, the accelerated expansion of production capacity by lithium-ion battery manufacturers, and the increase in orders for downstream cathode materials.
China Innovation Aviation (03931): In 2021-22, the company's power battery installed capacity has jumped to 3rd and 7th place in the domestic and global rankings, ranking 2nd among domestic third-party power battery companies.