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Buffett-Backed BYD Teaming Up With Daimler for Electric Cars in China

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China's BYD and Germany's Daimler are creating a 50-50 "research and technology" joint venture to "develop" electric cars in China.

The JV will be called Shenzhen BYD Daimler New Technology Co. Ltd. Initial investment: $88 million.

Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway owns a 10 percent stake in BYD and Buffett has personally promoted the company.

Since the investment was announced in September of 2008, BYD shares have soared almost 600 percent in Hong Kong and U.S. OTC trading.

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In a news release today, the companies say they plan to combine Daimler's expertise in "electric vehicle architecture and safety" with BYD's "excellence (in) battery technology and e-drive systems."

BYD Chairman and President Wang Chuanfu is quoted in the release as saying the companies are "making excellent progress identifying opportunities to utilize the strengths of both companies" and they are "pushing hard to bring this new electric vehicle to market as soon as possible."

No specifics, however, on timing.

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