Lentuo International (NYSE:LAS) is China's largest, private automobile retailer in Beijing in terms of revenue from sales of new vehicles. Lentuo runs 6 franchise dealerships, 10 showrooms, a repair shop and a leasing company in Beijing. The metropolitan area of Beijing is the largest market for cars in China. The company relies mostly on new vehicle sales, and in 2009, such sales consisted of 91% of total revenue. The company's repair and maintenance service made up 8.7% of 2009 revenues, and the remaining .3% came from insurance and financing services.
China's automobile industry has grown significantly in over the past 3 years by a compounded annual growth rate of 23.7% in terms of the number new car sales. The continued rise in China's middle class is expected to continue to increase this market. The growth in disposable of income of the average Chinese person is expected to bolster demand for luxury type items like new cars. According to the Chinese Automobile Dealers Association, the number of new car sales is predicted to grow by 10.3% from 2009 to 2010. Because Beijing is the largest metropolitan market for new cars, Lentuo believes it is well positioned to take advantage of this growing trend.
The company's initial public offering of stock on the NYSE occurred on December 9, 2010. The company offered 7.5M ADSs each for $8 each. This was at the low end of the revised range of $8-$10. The company's initial range was $11.5-$13.5. The offering raised $52M. The lead underwriters of the deal were Cowen & Company and HSBC Holdings (HBC).
Lentuo's total revenues in 2010 were $345M. This corresponds to a 25% increase over the 2008 total revenue figure. Despite this growth, the company reported a net loss in 2009 of $64K. This loss was largely due to a write down from discontinued operations.