F-1 1 tm212911-7_f1.htm tm212911-7_f1 - none - 40.7190299s
As filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on October 22, 2021
Registration No. 333-     
UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
FORM F-1
REGISTRATION STATEMENT
UNDER
THE SECURITIES ACT OF 1933
SONO GROUP N.V.
(Exact Name of Registrant as Specified in Its Charter)
The Netherlands
(State or other jurisdiction of
incorporation or organization)
3711
(Primary Standard Industrial
Classification Code Number)
N/A
(IRS Employer
Identification Number)
Waldmeisterstraße 76
80935 Munich, Germany
+49 (0)89 4520 5818
(Address, including zip code, and telephone number, including area code, of registrant’s principal executive offices)
Puglisi & Associates
850 Library Avenue, Suite 204
Newark, Delaware 19711
+1 (302) 738-6680
(Name, address, including zip code, and telephone number, including area code, of agent for service)
Copies of all communications, including communications
sent to agent for service, should be sent to:
Krystian Czerniecki
Clemens Rechberger
Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
Neue Mainzer Straße 52
60311 Frankfurt, Germany
+49 (69) 4272 5200
Paul van der Bijl
NautaDutilh N.V.
Beethovenstraat 400
1082 PR Amsterdam
The Netherlands
+31 (20) 717-1000
James McDonald
Skadden, Arps, Slate,
Meagher & Flom (UK) LLP
40 Bank Street, Canary Wharf
London E14 5DS
United Kingdom
+44 (20) 7519 7000
Andrea Nicolas
Skadden, Arps, Slate,
Meagher & Flom LLP
One Manhattan West, New York
New York 10001
+1 (212) 735-3000
Approximate date of commencement of proposed sale to the public:
As soon as practicable after this registration statement becomes effective.
If any of the securities being registered on this Form are to be offered on a delayed or continuous basis pursuant to Rule 415 under the Securities Act of 1933, please check the following box.   ☐
If this Form is filed to register additional securities for an offering pursuant to Rule 462(b) under the Securities Act, please check the following box and list the Securities Act registration statement number of the earlier effective registration statement for the same offering.   ☐
If this Form is a post-effective amendment filed pursuant to Rule 462(c) under the Securities Act, check the following box and list the Securities Act registration statement number of the earlier effective registration statement for the same offering.   ☐
If this Form is a post-effective amendment filed pursuant to Rule 462(d) under the Securities Act, check the following box and list the Securities Act registration statement number of the earlier effective registration statement for the same offering.   ☐
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is an emerging growth company as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act of 1933.
Emerging growth company.   ☒
If an emerging growth company that prepares its financial statements in accordance with U.S. GAAP, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards† provided pursuant to Section 7(a)(2)(B) of the Securities Act.   ☐
CALCULATION OF REGISTRATION FEE
Title of each class of securities
to be registered
Proposed maximum
aggregate offering
price(1)
Amount of
registration fee(2)
Common Shares, par value €0.06 per share
$ 100,000,000 $ 9,270
(1)
Estimated solely for the purpose of determining the amount of registration fee in accordance with Rule 457(o) under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended. Includes the offering price of additional shares that the underwriters have the option to purchase.
(2)
Calculated pursuant to Rule 457(o) based on an estimate of the proposed maximum aggregate offering price.
The registrant hereby amends this registration statement on such date or dates as may be necessary to delay its effective date until the registrant shall file a further amendment which specifically states that this registration statement shall thereafter become effective in accordance with Section 8(a) of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or until the registration statement shall become effective on such date as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, acting pursuant to said Section 8(a), may determine.

The term “new or revised financial accounting standard” refers to any update issued by the Financial Accounting Standards Board to its Accounting Standards Codification after April 5, 2012.

The information in this prospectus is not complete and may be changed. We may not sell these securities until the registration statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission is effective. This prospectus is not an offer to sell these securities and we are not soliciting offers to buy these securities in any jurisdiction where the offer or sale is not permitted.
PROSPECTUS (Subject to Completion)
Issued         , 2021
[MISSING IMAGE: lg_sonomotors-4c.jpg]
Common Shares
This is Sono Group N.V.’s initial public offering of common shares, €0.06 par value per share.
We expect the public offering price to be between $      and $      per common share. This is our initial public offering and no public market currently exists for our common shares.
Following this offering, we will have two classes of shares outstanding, common shares and high voting shares. The rights of the holders of common shares and high voting shares are identical, except with respect to voting, conversion and preemptive rights. Each common share is entitled to one vote per share and is not convertible into any other shares. Each high voting share is entitled to 25 votes per share, is convertible at the request by the holder at any time into one common share and carries preemptive rights commensurate to its nominal value. After giving effect to this offering, Laurin Hahn and Jona Christians, two of our founders and management board members, will hold all of the high voting shares. They will hold, in aggregate, approximately    % of the voting power of our outstanding shares following this offering (    % if the underwriters exercise their option to purchase additional common shares in full).
We have applied to list our common shares on The Nasdaq Global Market under the symbol “SEV”
We are both an “emerging growth company” and a “foreign private issuer” as defined under the U.S. federal securities laws and, as such, may elect to comply with certain reduced public company reporting requirements for this and future filings. See “Prospectus Summary—Implications of Being an Emerging Growth Company” and “Prospectus Summary—Implications of Being a Foreign Private Issuer.”
Investing in our common shares involves risks. See “Risk Factors” beginning on page 21.
PRICE $      PER COMMON SHARE
Underwriting
Discounts and
Commissions(1)
Proceeds to
Sono Group N.V.
Offering price to public
$        $       
Underwriting discounts and commissions(1)
$ $
Proceeds to Sono Group N.V.
$ $
(1)
See “Underwriters” for a description of the compensation payable to the underwriters.
To the extent that the underwriters sell more than           common shares, the underwriters have the option to purchase up to an additional           common shares from us at the initial public offering price, less the underwriting discount, for 30 days after the date of this prospectus.
Neither the Securities and Exchange Commission nor any state securities commission has approved or disapproved of these securities, or determined if this prospectus is truthful or complete. Any representation to the contrary is a criminal offense.
The underwriters expect to deliver the common shares to purchasers on                 , 2021.
BERENBERG
CRAIG-HALLUM
                 , 2021

 
TABLE OF CONTENTS
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F-1
For investors outside the United States of America (“United States” or “U.S.”): Neither we nor the underwriters have done anything that would permit this offering or possession or distribution of this prospectus in any jurisdiction, other than the United States, where action for that purpose is required. Persons outside the United States who come into possession of this prospectus must inform themselves about, and observe any restrictions relating to, the offering of our common shares and the distribution of this prospectus outside the United States.
Neither we nor the underwriters have authorized anyone to provide you with any information or to make any representations other than those contained in this prospectus or in any free writing prospectuses we have prepared, and neither we nor the underwriters take responsibility for, and can provide no assurance as to the reliability of, any other information others may give you. We and the underwriters are not making an offer to sell, or seeking offers to buy, these securities in any jurisdiction where the offer or sale is not permitted. You should not assume that the information contained in this prospectus is accurate as of any date other than its date, regardless of the time of delivery of this prospectus or of any sale of the common shares.
 
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LETTER FROM OUR FOUNDERS
Dear future Shareholders,
Climate change is one of the biggest threats facing the human species and our modern society. The main driver behind the exponential growth of CO2 (measured in parts per million) in our atmosphere is the burning of fossil fuels. At Sono Motors, we believe that the only way to overcome this challenge is to stop burning these resources. That’s why our mission is to accelerate the transition towards sustainable transport by integrating solar on every vehicle.
In order to achieve that, we built our company upon two pillars. The first, building solar electric vehicles (SEVs) and developing our digital services; and the second, selling and licensing our fully integrated solar technology to other manufacturers. We believe that this diversified business model is enabling us to build an ESG-driven, long-term oriented, fast growing company with additionally attractive financial returns.
We, Jona and Laurin, together with Navina, started this company as friends and technology enthusiasts with a big vision from a small garage in Munich, Germany. We developed the first prototype ourselves to fully understand the feasibility of our vision of an SEV for the mass market. Convinced the industry was too slow and real disruption would never come from one of the big players, we took matters into our own hands and started Sono Motors. As of September 30, 2021, more than 14,000 reservations have been made on the Sion, with an average down payment of USD 3,300.
We believe that SEVs will be the next big wave in e-mobility. Combustion engines are the past, electric vehicles are a thing of the present and solar electric vehicles are the future.
Jona and Laurin
 
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ABOUT THIS PROSPECTUS
We have historically conducted our business through Sono Motors GmbH, which became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sono Group N.V. after a corporate reorganization described as follows: We were incorporated pursuant to the laws of The Netherlands as Sono Motors Finance B.V. on October 23, 2020 as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sono Motors GmbH. As part of the corporate reorganization that was completed on November 27, 2020, our then-existing shareholders contributed all of their shares in Sono Motors GmbH to Sono Motors Finance B.V. in exchange for newly issued common shares of Sono Motors Finance B.V. In addition, the sole issued and outstanding common share in Sono Motors Finance B.V. at that time, which was held by Sono Motors GmbH, was cancelled (ingetrokken). As a result, Sono Motors GmbH became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sono Motors Finance B.V. and the then-existing shareholders of Sono Motors GmbH became the shareholders of Sono Motors Finance B.V. Also on November 27, 2020, Sono Motors Finance B.V. was converted into a public company with limited liability under Dutch law (naamloze vennootschap), and changed its legal name from Sono Motors Finance B.V. to Sono Group N.V. A portion of the newly issued common shares of Sono Group N.V. was also converted into high voting shares in the share capital of Sono Group N.V. Only the common shares of Sono Group N.V. are being offered hereby.
Unless otherwise indicated or the context otherwise requires, all references in this prospectus to “Sono Motors,” the “Company,” “we,” “our,” “ours,” “ourselves,” “us” or similar terms refer to (i) Sono Motors GmbH, together with its subsidiary Sono Motors Finance B.V. at that time, prior to the further implementation of the aforementioned corporate reorganization, (ii) Sono Motors Finance B.V. as of the completion of the exchange of all common shares in Sono Motors GmbH for newly issued common shares in Sono Motors Finance B.V. and prior to the conversion of Sono Motors Finance B.V. into Sono Group N.V. and (iii) Sono Group N.V. after the aforementioned corporate reorganization, in which Sono Motors Finance B.V. was converted into Sono Group N.V.
Sono Group N.V. is incorporated in The Netherlands, and a majority of its outstanding securities is owned by non-U.S. residents. Under the rules of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, or the SEC, Sono Group N.V. is currently eligible for treatment as a “foreign private issuer.” As a foreign private issuer, we will not be required to file periodic reports and consolidated financial statements with the SEC as frequently or as promptly as domestic registrants whose securities are registered under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, or the Exchange Act.
The terms “dollar,” “USD” or “$” refer to U.S. dollars, and the terms “€” or “euro” refer to the currency introduced at the start of the third stage of European economic and monetary union pursuant to the treaty establishing the European Community, as amended.
PRESENTATION OF FINANCIAL AND OTHER INFORMATION
Unless otherwise indicated, the consolidated financial statements and related notes included in this prospectus have been prepared in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards (“IFRS”) as issued by the International Accounting Standards Board (“IASB”), which differ in certain significant respects from U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (“U.S. GAAP”). Accordingly, our results of operations and financial condition derived from our IFRS consolidated financial statements that are included in this prospectus may differ substantially from the results of operations and financial condition derived from consolidated financial statements prepared in accordance with U.S. GAAP. We have not prepared a reconciliation of our financial information to U.S. GAAP or a summary of significant accounting differences in the accounting and valuation methods of IFRS and U.S. GAAP nor have we otherwise reviewed the impact the application of U.S. GAAP would have on our financial reporting. Financial information in thousands or millions, and percentage figures in this prospectus, have been rounded. Rounded total and sub-total figures in tables in this prospectus may differ marginally from unrounded figures indicated elsewhere in this prospectus or in the consolidated financial statements. Moreover, rounded individual figures and percentages may not produce the exact arithmetic totals and sub-totals indicated elsewhere in this prospectus.
 
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MARKET AND INDUSTRY DATA
We obtained the industry, market and competitive position data in this prospectus from our own internal estimates, surveys, and research as well as from publicly available information, industry and general publications and research, surveys and studies conducted by third parties, including, but not limited to, BloombergNEF, McKinsey & Company and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Energie).
Industry publications, research, surveys, studies and forecasts generally state that the information they contain has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but that the accuracy and completeness of such information is not guaranteed. Forecasts and other forward-looking information obtained from these sources are subject to the same qualifications and uncertainties as the other forward-looking statements in this prospectus. These forecasts and forward-looking information are subject to uncertainty and risk due to a variety of factors, including those described under “Risk Factors.” These and other factors could cause results to differ materially from those expressed in our forecasts or estimates or those of independent third parties.
TRADEMARKS, SERVICE MARKS AND TRADE NAMES
We have proprietary rights to trademarks used in this prospectus that are important to our business, many of which are registered under applicable intellectual property laws. Solely for convenience, the trademarks, service marks, logos and trade names referred to in this prospectus are without the ® and ™ symbols, but such references are not intended to indicate, in any way, that we will not assert, to the fullest extent under applicable law, our rights or the rights of the applicable licensors to these trademarks, service marks and trade names.
This prospectus contains additional trademarks, service marks and trade names of others, which are the property of their respective owners. All trademarks, service marks and trade names appearing in this prospectus are, to our knowledge, the property of their respective owners. We do not intend our use or display of other companies’ trademarks, service marks, copyrights or trade names to imply a relationship with, or endorsement or sponsorship of us by, any other companies.
 
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PROSPECTUS SUMMARY
This summary highlights information contained in more detail elsewhere in this prospectus. This summary may not contain all the information that may be important to you, and we urge you to read this entire prospectus carefully, including the “Risk Factors”, “Business” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” sections and our historical consolidated financial statements, including the notes thereto, included elsewhere in this prospectus, before deciding to invest in our common shares.
Sono Motors
Our Mission: Solar on Every Vehicle
We envision a world without burning fossil fuels. Our mission is: “Solar on Every Vehicle.” Our business was founded on a shared passion for finding a solution to climate-friendly, innovative and yet affordable mobility. The goal was to develop a solar powered, family-sized car for the mass market. To realize this goal, our founders assembled an experienced team of engineers, designers, technicians, and industry experts who spent years developing a solar technology suited for mobility applications. We developed and tested several prototypes to advance and refine our technology and enlisted driver feedback to create a design that would be simultaneously functional, convenient to operate, environmentally sustainable, and affordable.
From this process the Sion and our proprietary solar technology were born. The Sion is a solar electric vehicle, designed with a view to be accessible to everyday consumers and to be shared. Our technology allows us to integrate solar panels into the Sion’s bodywork to capture energy from the sun and store it in the Sion’s on-board battery. We believe the Sion unlocks the potential of solar energy in a car and advances our goal of providing a net-zero-emission vehicle solution for the mass market. We seek to license and sell our proprietary solar technology to a wide array of customers such as manufacturers of buses, trucks, camper vans, trains and even boats, in order to accelerate the transition towards sustainable transport and in order to have a second independent revenue stream.
Overview
We believe we are a pioneer and technological leader in the field of solar-powered electric mobility. We are in the process of developing and commercializing a disruptive solar technology that would allow every vehicle to benefit from solar power. We intend to use this technology to create our solar and battery powered vehicle that we call the Sion. In parallel, we are in the process of starting to license and sell our proprietary solar technology to other manufacturers for different use cases, such as buses, trucks, camper vans, trains and even boats, in order to accelerate the transition towards sustainable transportation. We intend to generate revenues from the sale of our vehicles and, in the first production cycle, from emission certificate pooling as well as from the monetization of our proprietary solar technology.
Our disruptive solar technology allows for full solar integration. In the process of developing the Sion, we soon realized that the available solar technology was not well-suited for mobility applications. Traditional solar technology relies on glass to cover the solar cells. Glass is, however, heavy, not sufficiently flexible, expensive and dangerous in crash situations. Our polymer technology solves these issues. It is lightweight, allows for flexible surface integration via our patented injection molding process, is affordable due to fast and lean production and avoids/eliminates the risk of bodily harm caused by broken glass. We have also developed other critical components for the use of solar technology in mobility applications. We have developed our own on-board charger and, through our maximum power point tracker central unit, or MCU, solved the issue that solar cells will be mounted on different parts of the exterior, which will lead to uneven exposure to sunlight. Our technology allows for the seamless integration of solar cells into the body of a car, such as the Sion, and the charging of its battery through the power of the sun. However, our technology is much more versatile, and its use cases extend far beyond passenger cars, allowing for grid-independent charging and a reduction of running costs or total costs of ownership in transport related use cases, such as trucks, buses, recreational vehicles or boats. We have started to market our technology to other mobility or transport manufacturers. We have received indications of interest and first purchase orders and shipped pre-production samples to customers. Other manufacturers may also benefit from our technology. They may use our technology to retrofit existing vehicles, to extend the range of battery electric vehicles, or BEVs, for new production vehicles or to comply with emission regulations. The transport and logistics industries in particular are very focused on total cost of ownership, where our solar integration can reduce running cost
 
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significantly. We have several patents granted or within the filing-process protecting our proprietary technology. Additionally, we have up to four years of advanced development ahead of who we believe to be our relevant competitors thanks to the patents, the testing of a large number of different polymer materials and the several relevant components for full solar integration, such as power electronics, especially the MCU.
Our technology will be one of the distinctive features of the Sion. It will have the ability to recharge itself using solar energy panels installed on the exterior that leverage our polymer-based solar technology. We expect that solar power will reduce the number of charging intervals and, depending on the vehicle’s usage profile, may even eliminate the need for battery charging, positioning us to benefit from a significant competitive advantage over conventional electric vehicles. The Sion’s polymer exterior significantly reduces the need for expensive metal-stamping tools and machinery costs, and the integration of solar modules into the bodywork eliminates the need for a costly paint shop, which helps us to offer the Sion at a comparatively low initial net entry price of €21.4 thousand. Consistent with our mission to lower CO2 emissions, each Sion will be outfitted with technology that can connect to our car- and ride-sharing networks through our proprietary hardware and software solutions. We expect that the Sion will be convenient to operate and comparatively affordable providing it with the potential to disrupt the market.
To make the Sion affordable for the mass market without compromising security or quality, we do things differently and, we believe, much more efficiently and sustainably than traditional car manufacturers or other pure EV manufacturers. We rely on a one-variant-only vehicle, third party production and business-to-consumer direct distribution, which we believe will enable us to maintain relatively low overhead costs, significantly reduce our capital expenditures, and position us to become a price-value leader compared to competitors’ offerings in the relevant car segments. We envision the Sion as a one-variant-only model. All Sions will have the same exterior color and vehicle features, and will rely on existing off-the-shelf component parts from established automotive suppliers, such as Vitesco Technologies German GmbH (a former subsidiary of Continental AG), Hella GmbH & Co. KGaA and Casco Schoeller GmbH, resulting in economies of scale through the partial elimination of development costs, reduced purchasing and manufacturing complexity, reduced logistical challenges and inventory costs, and lower risks associated with quality control and testing, all of which should facilitate more rapid growth of our operations and positions us to offer the Sion. The production of the Sion is currently expected to be outsourced to a contract manufacturer at the former Saab Automobile AB (“SAAB”) plant in Trollhättan, Sweden. Our goal is to offset 100% of the CO2 emissions generated by the production of the Sion and our future vehicle models, with a view to achieving full CO2 neutrality during the production cycle. Rather than relying on dealerships to sell the Sion, we intend to rely on what we consider to be an innovative and effective way to sell directly to customers through our online platform. Customers can view the Sion, book a test drive and engage and place orders directly with us. As of August 31, 2021, we had more than 14,000 reservations with advance payments resulting in total net cash inflows of €38.8 million from our customers, up from total net cash inflows of €37.9 million as of June 30, 2021. These reservations correspond to a net sales volume of approximately €300 million. However, our customers may cancel their reservations without penalty according to our general terms and conditions, if no binding purchase agreement has been concluded by an agreed deadline, which varies. Some reservations are already cancellable as of the date of this prospectus. We intend to begin delivering cars in the first half of 2023 and thereby fulfill customer reservations.
With respect to our solar technology licensing, we have shipped first pre-production samples to customers. With respect to the Sion, we are still in the pre-production phase and presented the second fully functional prototype generation in January 2021. The funding that we expect to obtain from this offering will not be sufficient to secure our needs through the start of production of the Sion. Assuming that we are able to raise the amounts we still need following this offering, we currently plan to commence commercial production of the Sion in the first half of 2023. For the six months ended June 30, 2021, we had a loss for the period of €25.7 million, compared to a loss for the period of €9.8 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020. Our loss for the period for the year ended December 31, 2020 was a loss of €56.0 million. We have incurred net losses since our inception in March 2016, resulting in an accumulated deficit of €108.8 million as of June 30, 2021. We believe that we will continue to incur losses and depend on external financing in the foreseeable future at least until we commence material deliveries of the Sion and the time when we significantly scale our operations, including the monetization of our solar technology.
 
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Our Market Opportunity
We believe that more needs to be done to slow down global warming and that new technologies are needed to reduce CO2 emissions.
Our Market Opportunity Related to Our Solar Technology
For the solar application market, we believe solar integration will be the logical next step for every pure electric vehicle. The recent decline in solar production prices as well as the increase in efficiency of solar cells finally enable solar integration to have a meaningful impact on ranges and autonomy of electric vehicles. Additionally, the steep increase in electric vehicle sales and the relatively slower increase in charging stations will create a bottleneck for the adoption of electric vehicles on a larger scale. We believe that even within the next few years, people living in apartments without private access to charging will be reluctant to buy electric vehicles due to uncertainty they will be able to find relevant charging options. This will put even more focus on electric vehicles with solar integration.
Other users, such as building owners, already see the power of solar integration to reduce energy consumption and, accordingly, total cost of ownership. As more means of transport, including ships, trucks, vans and buses switch to electric engines, the benefit of solar integration will, we believe, become increasingly clear and important to market participants over the coming years.
Our Market Opportunity Related to the Sion
We believe that political and regulatory pressure to reduce CO2 emissions will lead to lower demand for combustion engines and will increase demand for new technologies, such as battery electric vehicles. The global total market share for battery electric vehicles is expected to increase from 4% in 2020 to 58% in 2030, when 54 million battery electric vehicles are expected to be sold according to BloombergNEF. According to the same source, it is conceivable that production of internal combustion engine cars will stop before 2040, leading to a market share of battery electric vehicles of up to 100% by 2040. Several fundamental trends are expected to drive this increase, including increasing awareness concerning environmental matters and sustainable energy, urbanization and more stringent emissions regulations. Technological innovation, such as more efficient ways to produce batteries, longer battery lifetime and breakthroughs in solar technology are expected to enable mass market adoption.
According to a report by McKinsey & Company, the COVID-19 pandemic has prompted many governments to increase consumer incentives for electric vehicle purchases as part of economic stimulus programs. In Germany, for example, purchase-price subsidies for new electric vehicles from the German state currently amount to €6,000 per vehicle. Most recently, as of January 1, 2021, European Union, or EU, regulations now impose their most stringent ever CO2 emission limits on all new passenger cars registered in the EU. We believe we are well positioned with the Sion to benefit from these market opportunities as we intend to offer net-zero-emissions solar-powered electric mobility to the mass market at a comparatively affordable price. The following graphic summarized what we believe to be growth catalysts and enablers.
 
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[MISSING IMAGE: tm212911d5-fc_growth4c.jpg]
Limitations of Products Offered by Market Incumbents
We believe that the products offered by many of the incumbent manufacturers suffer from the following limitations and do not reflect current and projected trends in consumer demand and ignore recent developments in solar technologies.

Lack of innovative solutions from traditional players: Traditional car, truck or bus makers typically do not develop a new car from scratch, but rather refine and improve their existing models and technologies. We believe that this approach has hindered fundamental innovation, which can only be achieved in an efficient and sustainable manner if old structures are discarded.

Global warming and reduction of CO2 emissions: Cars, trucks, buses and boats with internal combustion engines are a significant contributor to total CO2 emissions, the main greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming. We believe that climate-friendly and affordable electric mobility is critical for achieving sustainable mobility and an attractive customer proposition.

Increasing demand for mobility solutions and resource conservation: The world’s population continues to grow. Providing mobility solutions to an increasing population in light of the world’s limited resources requires sustainable mobility concepts, such as easily accessible car-sharing and ride-pooling solutions.

Lack of sufficient charging infrastructure: Existing battery electric vehicles depend strongly on a limited number of charging stations. Many traditional carmakers believe the main solution to decreasing the dependency on charging infrastructure to be an increase in expensive battery capacity. Bigger batteries significantly increase both the price and the weight of the respective vehicle. As a result, battery electric vehicles either do not fulfill customers desires for sufficient range or become too expensive for the mass market.

Insufficient adaptation of solar technology for mobility use cases: Generally, the available solar technology is not well-suited for mobility applications. Traditional solar technology relies on glass to cover the solar cells. Glass is, however, heavy, not sufficiently flexible, expensive and dangerous in crash situations. There is a lack of readily available technology that efficiently controls the interconnection between various solar panels that are mounted on a non-flat surface so that the impact angles of the sun rays differ. For commercial vehicles, no relevant solar integration solution exists that would allow vehicle operators to reduce their costs of ownership.

Limited affordability of clean mobility technologies: Alternative and environmentally friendly mobility technologies have historically been expensive and are not ready for the mass market, in the case of electric vehicles primarily due to high battery prices and immature charging infrastructures in
 
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many markets. We want to be the first company to offer an affordable, practical, electric family vehicle with solar-recharge capabilities for the mass market.
Our Solution
We believe we are well positioned to address current market dislocations and to capture demand from consumers who desire a convenient and affordable car ownership experience and from manufacturers who seek access to disruptive solar technology for mobility application. Our solar technology is well-suited to provide benefits to most means of powered transport, especially new electric alternatives..

Innovative clean technology solutions: We believe we are a technological leader in solar-powered electric mobility. We consider ourselves to be the first company to develop a sophisticated concept for the full integration of polymer solar modules in a vehicle exterior. These polymer solar modules eliminate the need for heavy glass in a solar panel and allow for more flexibility. In addition, we have developed various other innovative technological solutions, including solutions for bidirectional charging, car-sharing and ride-pooling. We intend to include these technologies in the Sion, but will also monetize them separately

Suitable for everyday use: We have designed the Sion as a family vehicle based on an intelligent use-of-space concept. In developing the Sion, we have centered the design around our polymer-based solar technology. Based on our current development targets, the Sion is expected to have an electric battery range based on the worldwide harmonized light vehicles test procedure (WLTP) standard of up to 305 kilometers, or 190 miles. The seamlessly integrated solar modules are expected to provide additional range and significantly reduce dependency on charging infrastructures, potentially allowing customers to save money on private charging stations as some of the energy used to power the Sion is produced for free from sunlight or reduce their dependence on public charging infrastructure. We believe the reduction of external charging cycles compared to ordinary battery electric vehicles, together with the Sion’s comparatively low entry price, will make the Sion suitable for the mass market and everyday use and an especially attractive option for urban commuters and mid-low income families. All expected battery ranges for the Sion included in this prospectus are based on the WLTP. The WLTP methodology differs from the US EPA’s testing methodology, which typically has lower ranges than those determined using the WLTP standard.

Affordable for average consumers: The Sion will initially be available at a comparatively low net entry price of €21.4 thousand and is expected to position us to become the price-value leader in the relevant car segment based on total costs of ownership calculations performed by the German automobile club and by us. We believe that the ownership cost advantage, together with the Sion’s lower dependency on public or private charging infrastructures compared to normal battery electric vehicles, will provide the Sion with a competitive edge. Our competitors’ electric vehicles that are currently available, and that are expected to be launched in the relevant car segments in the near future, are expected to be significantly more expensive to purchase and operate than the Sion.

Heightened independence: Our technology will allow vehicles to generate power from the sun. This will decrease the dependence on charging infrastructure and the number of charging intervals and, depending on the vehicle’s usage profile, may even eliminate the need for battery charging and may allow for the use of batteries with less capacity than in traditional battery electric vehicles.

Disruptive solar technology: Our polymer technology has been developed for car and transport applications. It is lightweight, allows for flexible surface integration via our patented injection molding process, is affordable due to fast and lean production and avoids/eliminates the risk of bodily harm caused by broken glass. We have also developed other critical components for the use of solar technology in mobility applications. We have developed our own on-board charger and, through our power electronics, solved the issue that solar cells will be mounted on different parts of the exterior, which will lead to inhomogeneous exposure to sunlight. Our software visualizes the solar yield of the different parts of the Sion.

Sustainable and responsible mobility: The operation of the Sion itself will not emit any CO2 or other greenhouse gases and will align with our vision of sustainable and responsible electric mobility. We expect that operation of the first generation of Sions (including facelifts), which we currently estimate
 
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to be 257,000 vehicles, will save millions of tons of CO2 compared to the operation of internal combustion engine cars and taking into account expected car sharing. We currently expect that all production-related greenhouse gas emissions, which cannot be avoided or reduced along our supply chain and during the production process of the Sion will be fully neutralized through relevant offsetting measures.
Our Strengths
We believe the following combination of strengths, capabilities and features of our business model will distinguish us from our competitors and position us to successfully tap into the market for sun-powered mobility solutions.
Proprietary technology aimed at harnessing solar energy:   Finding solutions that allow for the efficient use of solar power in mobility applications requires departing from traditional solutions and approaches. Solar cells are typically inflexible and developed for flat surfaces that have the same exposure to sunlight, such as rooftops. Through a multi-year development and testing process, our solar experts and automotive engineers developed a technology that embeds solar cells in polymer instead of glass, making the cells more flexible, lighter, less expensive, and more efficient than any other solar solution available today. As a result, our solar modules can be seamlessly integrated into all major surface areas of the Sion via our patented injection molding process to optimize sunlight capture and are well-suited for use in other mobility settings, such as trucks, buses or boats. Solar-power will allow vehicles, such as the Sion, to operate with less dependency on battery charging infrastructures and a reduced number of loading cycles compared to ordinary battery electric vehicles. Our solar modules will also allow us to replace the traditional metal sheet exterior and eliminate the need for costly paint jobs. The layer of polymer on top of our solar cells provides protection against high temperature as well as impact and damage, such as scratches. Patents and know-how will protect our solar technology, making it difficult for potential competitors to provide similar solutions without licensing our technology.
Benefit from position as a technology leader. Based on the experience we have gained from developing and testing our Sion prototypes, we believe that we are well positioned to offer a one-stop-shop solution. We can take care of everything to realize solar integration in vehicles, from product development to the provision of services. We are able to deliver customized solutions, such as large body panels, solar sandwich panels, 3D shaped panels and semi-translucent solar windows, that meet the requirements and needs of potential customers in relation to different types of vehicles. Our on-board charger together with our high efficiency solar modules result in a highly efficient system, delivering outstanding power per square foot ratios.
Positioned to capture untapped affordable electric vehicle market poised for growth:   The market for electric vehicles is expected to show strong growth over the next ten or more years. This expected growth will be driven by a number of trends, including expected increasing convergence of production costs for electric cars and cars with internal combustion engines, consumer awareness of environmental concerns and sustainable energy and regulatory incentives aimed at promoting a shift to electric mobility. Within the market for electric vehicles, we believe that solar-powered electric mobility will be the next key trend. We are a solar-based electric mobility innovator with a clear focus on advancing solar technology. We do not have a design legacy that defines our brand, giving us the freedom to design the Sion with a focus on solar cell integration. The Sion’s net entry price of €21.4 thousand, coupled with its expected electric battery range based on the WLTP standard of up to 305 kilometers, or up to 190 miles, and its solar-charging capability, set the Sion apart from other electric mobility options. As a result, we believe that the Sion has the potential to be the first solar electric vehicle to meet the demands of a mass market.
Pre-orders demonstrate consumer support:   We have built what we believe is a vibrant and loyal community of potential customers. Potential customers can participate in online discussions with us and cast votes indicating their preference for certain features on the Sion. The traction we have gained among potential customers is evidenced by a significant number of pre-orders, which we believe provides commercial validation of our model and revenue momentum. As of August 31, 2021, we had received approximately 14,000 reservations resulting in total net cash inflows of €38.8 million in advance payments. These reservations correspond to a net sales volume of approximately €300 million. However, our customers may cancel their reservations without penalty according to our general terms and conditions, if no binding purchase agreement
 
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has been concluded by an agreed deadline, which varies by customers. Some reservations are already cancellable as of the date of this prospectus. In addition, we have recorded more than 15,000 pre-orders from business customers, for which no advance payments were made and no contractual agreements were entered into.
Lean, efficient and agile production model contains costs and promotes scalability:   Our production model was intentionally structured to align with our goals. We believe in plant sharing, in utilizing off-the-shelf component parts, and in a one-variant-only approach as ways to maintain relatively low overhead costs significantly reduce our capital expenditures, and to become the price-value leader in the Sion’s car segment. We intend to maintain an asset-light outsourced production model and plan to produce the Sion in the former SAAB plant in Trollhättan, Sweden, so we will not have to invest in purchasing, operating or maintaining our own manufacturing facilities. We also intend to generate cost savings by producing a single, standardized vehicle model and by sourcing off-the-shelf component parts, such as the electric motor, mirrors, tires and car seats, from established automotive suppliers rather than engineering custom parts ourselves. We believe this approach will allow us to benefit from economies of scale and comparatively low component part prices so that we can pass these savings on to our customers. We estimate that the combination of these initiatives will allow us to realize up to approximately €500 million in aggregate cost and capital expenditure avoidance. We believe our production model will reduce purchasing and manufacturing complexity, logistical challenges and inventory costs, and minimize risks associated with quality control and testing, all of which should facilitate rapid growth of our operations.
Founder-led management team that includes industry experts with a clear growth mission:   We are led by our founders, which gives us an outstanding combination of stability and a strong entrepreneurial corporate culture that fosters our common vision of affordable and sustainable electric mobility. Our founders are our major shareholders who drive our focus on long-term success and increasing shareholder value. We have also recruited experienced engineers from internationally renowned companies who possess strong skills in electrical engineering, solar engineering, automotive engineering and software development. Our experienced COO, CFO, CTO, Group Lead Solar and Group Lead Digital complement our high-impact senior team due to their significant expertise in automotive manufacturing, solar technology, and high-growth industries.
Our Growth Strategy
Our growth strategy focuses on two clearly identified building blocks: Monetization of our solar technology and production and sale of solar electric vehicles.
Growth Strategy Related to Our Solar Technology
Monetizing our technological innovations:   We see significant potential in our solar technology that is suitable for a broad range of applications due to its physical flexibility compared to traditional glass solar panels and that enables tailor-made solutions for our clients. We believe that our technology has the potential to disrupt existing markets without significant additional development costs. We have the knowledge and products to cover the entire value chain for solar integration. We have already received purchase orders or entered into several letters of intent for partnerships, including with manufacturers of trailers, autonomous electric shuttles, trains, trucks, buses and yachts that may use our technology in their own products. We may also produce and sell certain selected solar components, such as power electronics, license our patents to third parties or seek to generate service revenue from providing engineering services to third parties. They may use our technology to retrofit existing vehicles, to extend the range of battery electric vehicles, to equip new production vehicles or to comply with emission regulations.
Continuing to invest in technological innovation and intelligent mobility:   We have achieved significant technological and design improvements around the integration of solar modules in vehicles while simultaneously reducing manufacturing costs. We intend to continue to invest in technological innovation to further advance our technologies and innovations, as well as the safety, reliability, range capabilities and functionality of our vehicles. We plan to invest in the improvement of existing, and the development of new, technologies. We intend to dedicate significant funding to the engineering, design and development, as well as the tooling, of our solar technology. We also intend to invest in the continuous development of the Sion and future vehicle models.
 
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Growth Strategy related to the Sion
Advancing the development of the Sion:   We plan to use the expected proceeds from this offering to fund the next development phase of the Sion. We are currently executing a detailed plan to finish the design and development of the Sion, including finalizing the engineering of, and component sourcing for, the Sion. Further, we intend to use funding from this offering to building our final generation of pre-series prototypes.
Expanding our product portfolio:   We are developing a “one base” vehicle platform with a view to scalability and usability for future models. We intend to use modular systems in the Sion, including the powertrain, chassis, thermal unit and certain electronics. These modular systems can also be used for other car types without any, or only minor, modification. Leveraging this platform and these systems, we intend to roll out multiple new vehicle models across various segments, including a cargo van and a crossover passenger vehicle. We intend to equip all of our new electric vehicles with our solar technology, and all are expected to continue to be carbon neutral.
Increasing our geographic footprint:   Our initial market is focused on Germany, other EU member states and selected other European markets. We plan to expand our focus to additional nearby markets. In the long term, we currently intend to expand our operations to other, more remote markets, such as the United States and potentially even China. In order to reduce complexity, we currently plan to have at least some of the vehicles intended for a specific region manufactured by third-party manufacturers in that particular region.
Capturing additional revenue from CO2 pooling:   Many developed countries have environmental regulations and incentives that seek to reduce CO2 emissions, providing us with an additional potential revenue source. For example, under EU regulation, any automotive manufacturer who fails to reduce the average emissions of its fleet sold in the EU to a specific CO2 emission per kilometer is subject to penalty payments. A manufacturer can avoid, or reduce, penalty payments, if it pools its emissions with those of manufacturers that exceed emission targets, such as manufacturers of zero or low emission vehicles. The economic benefit is shared between the pooling participations, providing us with an additional source of revenue. We intend to participate in one or more of these pooling arrangements, which we believe will comprise a meaningful percentage of our future revenue and will come at virtually no extra cost to us.
Adapting our sales approach:   While we believe that our online approach to sales has the potential to replace the traditional dealership model of the car industry, we may consider supplementing or augmenting this approach by opening pop-up concept showrooms to allow our customers to view, touch and feel, and test-drive our model vehicles on-the-spot. We believe that pop-up concept showrooms may allow us to capture new potential customers who might not otherwise engage with our products. As we expand our product portfolio, we intend to utilize marketing and sales channels that provide us with the broadest possible reach and we intend to continue to be nimble and creative in how we target our customers to achieve maximum penetration in each market that we enter, while keeping our ambition of cost leadership in mind.
Continually improving our environmental performance:   The core of our mission is to create sustainable products in a sustainable way. Accordingly, we plan to enhance the efficiency of the Sion’s drive train to increase the range that can be achieved with a single battery charge. In sourcing components and choosing our partners, we seek to continuously improve the CO2 footprint of the components we source and the services we receive. Our goal is to offset 100% of the CO2 emissions generated by the production of the Sion and our future vehicle models, with a view to achieving full CO2 neutrality during the production cycle.
Corporate History, Reorganization and Recent Financing Transactions
Laurin Hahn and Jona Christians started our business in a garage in Munich, Germany in 2012 to further their vision of reinventing mobility through sustainable, responsible and affordable electric mobility. Together with Navina Pernsteiner, who is no longer involved in our management but is still one of our shareholders, the company was incorporated in 2016, pursuant to the laws of the Federal Republic of Germany as Sono Motors GmbH, through which we have historically conducted our business.
Sono Motors GmbH became the wholly-owned subsidiary of Sono Group N.V. upon the conclusion of a corporate reorganization that was completed on November 27, 2020. Through this reorganization, we incorporated Sono Motors Finance B.V. on October 23, 2020, pursuant to the laws of The Netherlands, as
 
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a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sono Motors GmbH. As part of the corporate reorganization, our then-existing shareholders contributed all of their shares in Sono Motors GmbH to Sono Motors Finance B.V. in exchange for newly issued common shares of Sono Motors Finance B.V. In addition, the sole issued and outstanding common share in Sono Motors Finance B.V. at that time, which was held by Sono Motors GmbH, was cancelled (ingetrokken). As a result, Sono Motors GmbH became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sono Motors Finance B.V. and the then-existing shareholders of Sono Motors GmbH became the shareholders of Sono Motors Finance B.V. Also on November 27, 2020, Sono Motors Finance B.V. was converted into a public company with limited liability under Dutch law (naamloze vennootschap), and changed its legal name from Sono Motors Finance B.V. to Sono Group N.V. A portion of the newly issued common shares of Sono Group N.V. were also converted into high voting shares in Sono Group N.V. Only the common shares of Sono Group N.V. are being offered hereby. As of the date of this prospectus, Sono Motors GmbH is the only subsidiary of Sono Group N.V. Sono Motors GmbH has no subsidiaries.
On December 10, 2020, Sono Group N.V. increased its share capital by issuing 1,735,197 new common shares against payment of €38.2 million to various new shareholders as part of a private capital raise. On the same date, we also issued to certain new investors mandatory convertible senior notes, governed by German law and having an aggregate nominal value of €6.8 million. The terms and conditions of the mandatory convertible senior notes provide for a mandatory conversion of the notes into newly issued common shares in Sono Group N.V., based on a discount of 25% plus accrued interest for the newly issued shares upon certain triggering events, including an underwritten initial public offering of the common shares of the Company, as is contemplated by this offering. The mandatory convertible senior notes mature on December 10, 2023 unless converted earlier and bear interest of 7% p.a. for the first 18 months and 10% p.a. thereafter. There will be no regular interest payments. Interest will either be reflected in the discount at conversion or be paid at maturity, whatever is earlier.
In the six months ended June 30, 2021, we issued 68,136 new common shares against payment of €1.5 million to one new shareholder and one existing shareholder as part of a private capital raise.
Selected Risks Associated with Our Industry, Business, Operations and Financial Position
Our business is subject to numerous risks, as is more fully described in the section entitled “Risk Factors.” You should read these risks before you invest in our shares. We may be unable, for many reasons, including those that are beyond our control, to implement our business strategy. In particular, risks associated with our business include, but are not limited to, the following:

our history of significant losses and expected continuing losses for the foreseeable future, which lead to continued reliance on external financing and raise substantial doubt about our ability to continue as a going concern;

the dependence of our success and future growth upon the market’s willingness to adopt solar electric vehicles;

developments in vehicle technology that may adversely affect the demand for solar electric vehicles;

the competitiveness of the automotive market and the risk to fail to be among the first to serve the mass market with an electric vehicle with solar power capability;

high volatility of demand in the automobile industry;

our unproven ability to develop vehicles and the risk to fail to finalize development and realize the commercialization of the Sion within the intended timeframe, budget or at all;

the initial dependence on a single car model, the Sion;

that our customers may cancel their reservations for the Sion without penalty;

our intention to deploy technologies and solutions in our vehicles, including our solar module technology, which may not be fully functional or available on our anticipated schedule or at all, and may remain unproven and pose additional risks;

our dependence on the adequate protection of our intellectual property;
 
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that our patent applications may not lead to the granting of patents or desired protection in time or at all, which may have a material adverse effect on our ability to prevent others from commercially exploiting products similar to ours;

obstacles we may face in tapping additional revenue opportunities;

a delay in the commercial production of the Sion;

our possible inability to develop manufacturing processes and capabilities within our projected costs and timelines;

our unproven and still evolving ability to manufacture vehicles of sufficient quality and appeal to customers on schedule and at scale and to commercialize our vehicles;

our dependence on our contract manufacturer NEVS for production of the Sion;

our dependence on the development, production, performance and durability of batteries being engineered by a single supplier;

our intention to outsource logistics management of our operations to third-party logistics (3PL) and potentially fourth-party logistics (4PL) services providers;

ongoing negotiations of contractual agreements with many of our prospective suppliers and business partners and potential renegotiations of these agreements as we scale our business;

the involvement of numerous third parties in our process, which adds significant complexity;

our dependence on the acceptance of our brand and any negative publicity relating to any of our business partners and their products or services, which could have a significant negative impact on our business and reputation;

the risk that the Sion or any of our future vehicles may fail to perform as expected;

our significant use of various communication channels for our public relations activities, including our website and social media;

damage to our reputation due to the perception that our advertisements were overly positive or that we do not live up to our promises;

noncompliance of our advertisements with all relevant legal requirements in the past or in the future;

product recalls that could materially adversely affect our business, prospects, operating results and financial condition;

any unauthorized control or manipulation of our vehicles’ systems;

risks associated with our growth strategy and international operations, including unfavorable regulatory, political, tax and labor conditions, which could harm our business;

our failure to manage our future growth effectively;

our inability to attract and retain key employees and hire qualified management, technical and vehicle engineering personnel, which could harm our ability to compete;

risks related to health epidemics, including the recent COVID-19 pandemic; and

the need to raise additional funds until the start of the production of the Sion and potentially beyond, which may not be available to us on acceptable terms or at all when we need them.
Corporate Information
Our principal executive offices are located at Waldmeisterstraße 76, 80935 Munich, Federal Republic of Germany. Our telephone number is +49 (0)89 4520 5818. Our website address is www.sonomotors.com. The information contained on, or that can be accessed through, our website is not incorporated by reference into this prospectus, and you should not consider any information contained on, or that can be accessed through, our website as part of this prospectus or in deciding whether to purchase our common shares. We do business under the commercial name Sono Motors.
 
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Enforcement of Civil Liabilities
We are organized and existing under the laws of The Netherlands, and, as such, under Dutch private international law rules the rights of our shareholders and the civil liability of our management board members, supervisory board members and executive officers are governed in certain respects by the laws of The Netherlands. The ability of our shareholders in certain countries other than The Netherlands to bring an action against us, our management board members, supervisory board members and executive officers may be limited under applicable law. In addition, substantially all of our assets are located outside the United States.
As a result, it may not be possible for shareholders to effect service of process within the United States upon us or our management board members, supervisory board members and executive officers or to enforce judgments against us or them in U.S. courts, including judgments predicated upon the civil liability provisions of the federal securities laws of the United States. In addition, it is not clear whether a Dutch court would impose civil liability on us or any of our management board members, supervisory board members and executive officers in an original action based solely upon the federal securities laws of the United States brought in a court of competent jurisdiction in The Netherlands.
As of the date of this prospectus, the United States and The Netherlands do not have a treaty providing for the reciprocal recognition and enforcement of judgments, other than arbitration awards, in civil and commercial matters. With respect to choice of court agreements in civil or commercial matters, it is noted that the Hague Convention on Choice of Court Agreements entered into force for The Netherlands, but has not entered into force for the United States. Accordingly, a judgment rendered by a court in the United States, whether or not predicated solely upon U.S. securities laws, would not automatically be recognized and enforced by the competent Dutch courts. However, if a person has obtained a judgment rendered by a court in the United States that is enforceable under the laws of the United States and files a claim with the competent Dutch court, the Dutch court will in principle give binding effect to a foreign judgment if (i) the jurisdiction of the foreign court was based on a ground of jurisdiction that is generally acceptable according to international standards, (ii) the judgment by the foreign court was rendered in legal proceedings that comply with the Dutch standards of proper administration of justice including sufficient safeguards (behoorlijke rechtspleging), (iii) binding effect of such foreign judgment is not contrary to Dutch public order (openbare orde) and (iv) the judgment by the foreign court is not incompatible with a decision rendered between the same parties by a Dutch court, or with a previous decision rendered between the same parties by a foreign court in a dispute that concerns the same subject and is based on the same cause, provided that the previous decision qualifies for recognition in The Netherlands. Even if such a foreign judgement is given binding effect, a claim based thereon may, however, still be rejected if the foreign judgment is not or no longer formally enforceable.
Based on the lack of a treaty as described above, U.S. investors may not be able to enforce against us or our management board members, supervisory board members, representatives or certain experts named herein who are residents of The Netherlands or countries other than the United States any judgments obtained in U.S. courts in civil and commercial matters, including judgments under the U.S. federal securities laws.
The United States and Germany currently do not have a treaty providing for the reciprocal recognition and enforcement of judgments, in civil and commercial matters. Consequently, a final judgment for payment or declaratory judgments given by a court in the United States, whether or not predicated solely upon U.S. securities laws, would not automatically be recognized or enforceable in Germany. German courts may deny the recognition and enforcement of a judgment rendered by a U.S. court if they consider the U.S. court not to be competent or the decision to be in violation of German public policy principles. For example, judgments awarding punitive damages are generally not enforceable in Germany. A German court may reduce the amount of damages granted by a U.S. court and recognize damages only to the extent that they are necessary to compensate actual losses or damages. See “Enforcement of Civil Liabilities” for more detail.
Implications of Being an Emerging Growth Company
We qualify as an “emerging growth company” as defined in the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act of 2012 (the “JOBS Act”). An emerging growth company may take advantage of specified reduced reporting and is exempt from other burdens that are otherwise generally applicable to public companies. These provisions include:
 
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the ability to include only two years of audited financial statements and only two years of related Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations disclosure;

an exemption from the auditor attestation requirement in the assessment of our internal control over financial reporting pursuant to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, as amended (the “Sarbanes-Oxley Act”), which would otherwise be applicable beginning with our second annual report following consummation of this offering;

to the extent that we no longer qualify as a foreign private issuer (1) reduced disclosure obligations regarding executive compensation in our periodic reports and proxy statements and (2) exemptions from the requirements of holding a non-binding advisory vote on executive compensation, including golden parachute compensation; and

an exemption from compliance with the requirement that the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board has adopted that would otherwise require our independent registered public accounting firm to communicate “critical accounting matters” in its report. A critical accounting matter is any matter arising from the audit of the financial statements that was communicated or required to be communicated to the audit committee and that (1) relates to accounts or disclosures that are material to the financial statements and (2) involved especially challenging, subjective or complex auditor judgment.
We may take advantage of these provisions for up to five years following the completion of this offering or such earlier time that we are no longer an emerging growth company. We would cease to be an emerging growth company if we have more than $1.07 billion in annual revenue, have more than $700 million in market capitalization of our shares held by non-affiliates, or issue more than $1.0 billion of non-convertible debt over a three-year period. We may choose to take advantage of some but not all of these reduced burdens. We have taken advantage of reduced reporting requirements in this prospectus. Accordingly, the information contained herein may be different than the information you receive from other public companies in which you hold equity securities.
Implications of Being a Foreign Private Issuer
Upon consummation of this offering, we will report under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”), as a non-U.S. company with foreign private issuer status. Even after we no longer qualify as an emerging growth company, as long as we qualify as a foreign private issuer under the Exchange Act, we will be exempt from certain provisions of the Exchange Act that are applicable to U.S. domestic public companies, including:

the rules under the Exchange Act requiring domestic filers to issue financial statements prepared under U.S. GAAP;

the sections of the Exchange Act regulating the solicitation of proxies, consents or authorizations in respect of a security registered under the Exchange Act;

the sections of the Exchange Act requiring insiders to file public reports of their stock ownership and trading activities and liability for insiders who profit from trades made in a short period of time; and

the rules under the Exchange Act requiring the filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) of quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, containing unaudited financial and other specified information, and current reports on Form 8-K, upon the occurrence of specified significant events.
We will file with the SEC, within four months after the end of each fiscal year, or such applicable time as required by the SEC, an annual report on Form 20-F containing consolidated financial statements audited by an independent registered public accounting firm.
We may take advantage of these exemptions until such time as we are no longer a foreign private issuer. We would cease to be a foreign private issuer at such time as more than 50% of our outstanding voting securities are held of record by U.S. residents and any of the following three circumstances applies: (i) the majority of our executive officers or directors are U.S. citizens or residents; (ii) more than 50% of our assets are located in the United States; or (iii) our business is administered principally in the United States. For
 
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purposes of determining whether more than 50% of our outstanding voting securities are held by U.S. residents, we intend to look to whether more than 50% of the voting power of our common shares and high voting shares on a combined basis are directly or indirectly held of record by residents of the United States.
Both foreign private issuers and emerging growth companies are also exempt from certain more extensive executive compensation disclosure rules. Thus, even if we no longer qualify as an emerging growth company but remain a foreign private issuer, we will continue to be exempt from the more extensive compensation disclosure requirements for companies that are neither an emerging growth company nor a foreign private issuer and will continue to be permitted to follow our home country practice on such matters.
 
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THE OFFERING
Issuer
Sono Group N.V.
Common shares offered by us
We are offering          common shares.
Option to purchase additional common shares
We have granted the underwriters the option to purchase up to          additional common shares from us, within 30 days of the date of this prospectus.
Common shares to be outstanding immediately after this offering
       common shares (         common shares if the underwriters exercise their option to purchase additional common shares within 30 days of the date of this prospectus from us in full).
Voting rights
Following this offering, we will have two classes of shares outstanding, common shares and high voting shares. The rights of the holders of common shares and high voting shares are identical, except with respect to voting, conversion and preemptive rights. Each common share is entitled to one vote per share and is not convertible into any other shares. Each high voting share is entitled to 25 votes per share, is convertible at the request by the holder at any time into one common share and carries preemptive rights commensurate to its nominal value. After giving effect to this offering, Laurin Hahn and Jona Christians, two of our founders and management board members, will hold all of the high voting shares. They will hold, in aggregate, approximately       % of the voting power of our outstanding shares following this offering (      % if the underwriters exercise their option to purchase additional common shares in full).
Use of proceeds
We estimate that the net proceeds to us from this offering will be approximately $      million (or $      if the underwriters exercise their option to purchase additional common shares from us in full), assuming an initial public offering price of $      per common share, which is the midpoint of the price range set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, after deducting the underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated expenses of the offering that are payable by us.
The principal reasons for this offering are to finance our business, to increase our public profile and awareness, create a public market for our common shares and facilitate our future access to public equity markets. We plan to use the expected proceeds from this offering for the completion of our next prototype generation, the so-called generation III, to secure going concern until May 2023 and to secure or repay the down payments received until October 2021. Any remainder will be used for further investments to reach serial production. The funding that we expect to obtain from this offering will, however, not be sufficient to secure our needs through the start of production of the Sion. See “Use of Proceeds.
Dividend policy
We have never paid or declared any cash dividends in the past, and we do not anticipate paying any cash dividends in the foreseeable future. We intend to retain all available funds and any future earnings to fund the completion of the development of the Sion and the start of its serial production as well as the further development and expansion of our business. Under Dutch law, we may only pay dividends
 
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and other distributions from our reserves to the extent our shareholders’ equity (eigen vermogen) exceeds the sum of the paid-in and called-up share capital plus the reserves required to be maintained by Dutch law or by our articles of association and (if it concerns a distribution of profits) after adoption of the annual accounts by the general meeting from which it appears that such dividend distribution is allowed. Subject to such restrictions, any future determination to pay dividends or other distributions will be at the discretion of our management board with the approval of our supervisory board and will depend upon a number of factors, including our results of operations, financial condition, future prospects, contractual restrictions, restrictions imposed by applicable law and other factors our management board and supervisory board deem relevant. See “Dividend Policy.”
Lock-up agreements
We intend to agree with Berenberg Capital Markets LLC, subject to certain exceptions, not to, directly or indirectly, offer, sell, assign, transfer, pledge contract to sell, or otherwise dispose of any shares of our share capital or securities convertible into or exchangeable or exercisable for any shares of our share capital without the prior written consent of Berenberg Capital Markets LLC, during the 180-day period following the date of this prospectus. Our management board members, substantially all of our existing shareholders and holders of certain mandatory convertible senior notes previously issued by us are expected to agree to substantially similar lock-up provisions, subject to certain exceptions. The lock-up period under the agreements to be entered into with our existing shareholders and the holders of our mandatory convertible senior notes and with the holders of our common equity raised from December 2020 to June 2021 will cover the 90-day period following the date of this prospectus. See “Underwriters.”
Listing
We have applied to list our common shares on The Nasdaq Global Market, or Nasdaq, under the symbol “SEV.”
Unless otherwise indicated, all information contained in this prospectus assumes or gives effect to:

the full conversion of mandatory convertible senior notes into our common shares concurrently with the consummation of this offering;

an initial public offering price of $      per common share, which is the midpoint of the price range set forth on the cover page of this prospectus; and

no exercise by the underwriters of their option to purchase additional common shares in this offering.
 
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SUMMARY FINANCIAL AND OPERATING DATA
We present a summary of historical financial data of Sono Group N.V. below. The financial data as of and for the years ended December 31, 2019 and December 31, 2020, has been taken or derived from our consolidated financial statements and the related notes thereto, which are included elsewhere in this prospectus and which have been prepared in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards (“IFRS”) as issued by the International Accounting Standards Board (“IASB”).
The Summary of historical financial data presented below are not necessarily indicative of the financial results for future periods. The summary of historical financial data below do not contain all the information included in our consolidated financial statements. You should read this information in conjunction with “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and our consolidated financial statements and the related notes thereto, each included elsewhere in this prospectus.
Consolidated Statements of Income (Loss) and Statements of Comprehensive Income (Loss)
For the year
ended December 31,
For the six months
ended June 30,
2020
2019(1)
2021
2020
(in € millions)
(in € millions)
Revenue
Cost of sales
Gross profit
Cost of research and development
(30.5) (4.9) (13.5) (6.4)
Selling and distribution expenses
(9.1) (2.1) (1.6) (1.1)
General and administrative expenses
(14.4) (2.4) (8.3) (1.5)
Other operating income/expenses
(0.0) 0.2 0.4 0.1
Impairment losses on financial assets
(0.0) (0) (0)
Operating loss
(54.0) (9.3) (23.0) (8.9)
Other interest and similar income
0.0 0
Interest and other expenses
(2.0) (0.7) (2.6) (0.9)
Loss before tax
(56.0) (10.0) (25.6) (9.8)
Tax on income
0 0
Deferred taxes on expense
(0)
Loss for the period
(56.0)
(10.0)
(25.7)
(9.8)
Other comprehensive loss
(0) (0.1)
Total comprehensive loss for the period
(56.0) (10.0) (25.8) (9.8)
Earnings (loss) per share in €
Basic/diluted
(1.66)/(1.66)
(0.30)/(0.30)
(0.79)/(0.79)
(0.29)/(0.29)
Weighted average number of shares for calculation of earnings per share
Basic/diluted
33,733,462 33,251,883 32,367,901 33,588,000
(1)
Other interest and similar income, interest and other expenses, loss before tax, loss for the period, total comprehensive loss for the period, (loss) per share in EUR and basic and diluted were restated for 2019 due to a change in accounting policies in accordance with IAS 8 (Accounting policies, changes in accounting estimates and errors) with respect to a reclassification of advance payments received by customers from financial liabilities in accordance with IFRS 9 to contract liabilities in accordance with IFRS 15. Please also refer to Note 4 to the consolidated financial statements included in this prospectus.
 
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Selected Consolidated Cash Flow Statement Data
For the year
ended December 31,
For the six months
ended June 30,
2020
2019(1)
2021
2020
(in € millions)
(in € millions)
Net cash flows from operating activities
(1.2) (8.8) (17.8) 11.9
Net cash flows from investing activities
(0) (1.1) (0.5) (0)
Net cash flows from financing activities
44.1 8.8 1.2 3.1
Net (decrease) increase in cash and cash equivalents
42.9 (1.1) (17.1) 15.0
Cash and cash equivalents at the beginning of the financial year
0.4 1.5 43.3 0.4
Cash and cash equivalents at end of year
43.3 0.4 26.1 15.4
(1)
Net cash flows from operating activities, net cash flows from investing activities and net cash flows from financing activities were restated for 2019 due to a change in accounting policies in accordance with IAS 8 (Accounting policies, changes in accounting estimates and errors) with respect to a reclassification of advance payments received by customers from financial liabilities in accordance with IFRS 9 to contract liabilities in accordance with IFRS 15. Please also refer to Note 4 to the consolidated financial statements included in this prospectus.
Selected Consolidated Balance Sheets Data
As of
December 31,
As of
June 30,
2020
2019(1)
2021
(in € millions)
(in € millions)
Total noncurrent assets
4.1 4.8 4.1
Total current assets
49.2 0.9 34.6
Total assets
53.3 5.7 38.6
Total equity
(5.0) (18.6) (28.1)
Total liabilities
58.4 24.3 66.8
Total equity and liabilities
53.3 5.7 38.6
(1)
Total equity and total liabilities were restated for 2019 due to a change in accounting policies in accordance with IAS 8 (Accounting policies, changes in accounting estimates and errors) with respect to a reclassification of advance payments received by customers from financial liabilities in accordance with IFRS 9 to contract liabilities in accordance with IFRS 15. Please also refer to Note 4 to the consolidated financial statements included in this prospectus.
 
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RISK FACTORS
You should carefully consider the risks and uncertainties described below and the other information in this prospectus before making an investment in our common shares. Our business, financial condition or results of operations could be materially and adversely affected if any of these risks occurs, and as a result, the market price of our common shares could decline and you could lose all or part of your investment.
This prospectus also contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. See “Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements.” Our actual results could differ materially and adversely from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements as a result of certain factors, including the risks facing our company.
Risks Related to Our Industry
Our success and future growth is dependent upon the market’s willingness to adopt solar electric vehicles.
The demand for our vehicles will highly depend upon the demand for and adoption of electric vehicles in general and solar electric vehicles in particular. The market for electric vehicles, particularly solar electric vehicles, is still rapidly evolving, characterized by rapidly changing technologies, price and other competition, evolving government regulation and industry standards, as well as changing or uncertain consumer demands and behaviors. Factors that may influence the adoption of electric vehicles in general, and solar electric vehicles in particular, include:

perceptions about the effectiveness of solar technology deployed in electric vehicles;

perceptions about electric vehicle quality, safety, design, performance and cost, especially if adverse events or accidents occur that are linked to the quality or safety of electric vehicles;

perceptions about vehicle safety in general, including the use of advanced technology, such as vehicle electronics, solar power, storage and regenerative braking systems;

the range limit over which electric vehicles may be driven on a single battery charge and the speed at which batteries can be recharged;

technical innovations concerning battery capacity and ability to hold its charge;

improvements in the fuel economy of internal combustion engines;

the availability of and service for electric vehicles;

the degree of environmental consciousness of consumers;

access to charging stations, standardization of electric vehicle charging systems and consumers’ perceptions about convenience and cost to charge an electric vehicle;

changes in the relative cost of electricity, oil, gasoline and hydrogen;

government regulations and economic incentives promoting fuel efficiency and alternate forms of energy;

the availability of tax and other governmental incentives to purchase and operate electric vehicles or future regulation requiring increased use of nonpolluting vehicles; and

macroeconomic factors.
While other car manufacturers such as Tesla, Inc., have successfully commercialized pure battery electric vehicles, electric vehicles with a self-recharging component based on solar modules have not yet been introduced into the car market and remain commercially unproven. The Sion, the solar electric vehicle we are currently developing, may therefore not be as well accepted by the market as expected or not accepted at all and may not be able to claim the market position we hope for.
Developments in vehicle technology may adversely affect the demand for solar electric vehicles.
The automotive industry, particularly the e-mobility segment, is strongly technology driven and many established and new car manufacturers have entered or plan to enter the market for alternative fuel vehicles.
 
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We expect competition in our industry to intensify in the future in light of regulatory initiatives and promotion, advancement of and increased demand for alternative fuel technologies and continuing consolidation in the worldwide automotive industry. Significant developments in alternative technologies, such as hydrogen fuel cell technology or advanced diesel, ethanol, or compressed natural gas or improvements in the fuel economy of the internal combustion engine, may materially and adversely affect solar electric vehicles. Other fuels or sources of energy may emerge as customers’ preferred alternative to our vehicle platform. Developments in battery technology, such as solid state batteries, may make solar technology superfluous. Any such development could threaten the successful commercialization of solar electric vehicles. Any failure by us to develop new or enhanced technologies or processes, or to react to changes in existing technologies or innovations of competitors, could result in the loss of competitiveness, negatively impact revenue and lead to a loss of market share.
The automotive market is highly competitive and we may not be among the first to serve the mass market with an electric vehicle with solar power capability.
The automotive market in general, and the automotive mass market in particular, are highly competitive and we are not the only company seeking to develop and offer a solar powered car. We believe that our solar module technology provides a competitive advantage and could, together with other factors, place us among the first to provide an electric vehicle (partly) powered by solar energy at a comparably low entry-price. However, numerous competitors strive to offer e-mobility affordable to the masses and several other market players are currently experimenting with solar charging technology, including manufacturers with established brands and significantly greater financial resources than us such as Tesla, Toyota and Lightyear. Some of our competitors benefit from greater financial resources, more extensive development, manufacturing, marketing and service capabilities, own manufacturing assets, greater brand recognition and a larger number of managerial and technical personnel. If competitors’ vehicles are brought to market at an affordable price or other material competitive (technological) advantage, we may experience a significant reduction in potential market share and reduction in expected revenue streams, which could impact our ability to successfully market the Sion or other models. Products from our competitors, particularly from low-cost electric car manufacturers, may successfully compete with or surpass the performance of our vehicles at more competitive prices.
We expect competition in our industry to intensify in the future, particularly in light of increased demand for alternative fuel and a regulatory push for electric vehicles (e.g., CO2 target emission regulations and tax or other monetary incentives), as well as declining battery prices. Continuing globalization may lead to additional potential competitors in emerging economies. Factors affecting competition include manufacturing efficiency, vehicle price, product quality, performance and features, design and styling, innovation and development time, reliability, safety, energy economy, charging options, customer service and financing terms. Increased competition may lead to lower vehicle unit sales and increased inventory, which may result in price pressure. We cannot guarantee that we will be able to successfully compete in our markets or that competitors will not build affordable electric vehicles with solar power technology or other competitive advantages before us. If the Sion is not among the first to market, this could significantly impact our ability to successfully launch the Sion and establish the Sono brand. Even if the Sion is among the first to market, we cannot assure that customers will choose our vehicles over those of our competitors, or over traditional battery electric vehicles or fossil fuel powered vehicles.
Demand in the automobile industry is highly volatile.
The markets in which we plan to compete have been subject to considerable volatility in demand. Demand for automobile sales depends to a large extent on general, economic, political and social conditions in a given market and the introduction of new vehicles and technologies. Difficult macroeconomic conditions, such as decreases in per capita income and level of disposable income, increased and prolonged unemployment or a decline in consumer confidence as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as spending reductions by businesses, could have a material adverse effect on demand for our vehicles. As a new automobile manufacturer, we have significantly less financial resources than more established automobile manufacturers to withstand changes in the market and disruptions in demand or to maintain operations as we seek to reach establishment of our brands and significant sales.
 
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Demand for electric vehicles may also be affected by factors directly impacting automobile price or the cost of purchasing and operating automobiles such as sales and financing incentives, prices of raw materials, parts and components, cost of fuel and governmental regulations, including tariffs, import regulation and other taxes. Volatility in demand may lead to lower vehicle unit sales and increased inventory, which may result in downward price pressure and adversely affect our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operation.
Risks Related to Our Business and Operations
We are an early stage company with a history of significant losses and expect continuing losses for the foreseeable future, which lead to continued reliance on significant external financing and raise substantial doubt about our ability to continue as a going concern.
We are in the process of developing a solar electric vehicle, the Sion. We are still in the pre-production phase of our vehicles and preparing for commercial production. We do not generate any revenue from our operations and will likely not do so until the commercial serial production of our vehicles, which we currently plan to commence in the first half of 2023, or, to a certain extent, the monetization of our solar technology. We have no relevant revenues. Our result for the six months ended June 30, 2021 was a loss for the period of €25.7 million, up from a loss for the period of €9.8 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020. Our loss for the period for the year ended December 31, 2020 was a loss of €56.0 million. We have incurred net losses since our inception in March 2016, resulting in an accumulated deficit of €108.8 million as of June 30, 2021. We will incur significant expenses as we conduct research, expand and refine our technology, continue our development of the Sion and seek street certification. We will also incur expenses related to preparations for the commercialization of the Sion, increasing our sales and marketing activities with the goal of building our brand, and adding infrastructure and personnel to support our growth. In addition, we currently incur various expenses from, for example, general administrative functions and our headquarters and expect that these expenses will increase following the offering, including as a result of costs relating to being a public company. We will not be able to cover our expenses with revenues at least until such time at which we begin material deliveries of the Sion and significantly increase the scale of our operations. Furthermore, we expect to incur additional substantial expenses in the foreseeable future as we intend to expand our business and product portfolio and invest in the design and development of new car models. These activities, which we consider vital to the development of our business, may result in prolonged losses. There is no guarantee that we will reach meaningful revenue levels or profitability or even that we will be able to continue as a going concern. If we are unable to achieve profitability, we may have to reduce the planned scale of our operations, which may impact our business growth and adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations. In addition, our continuous operation and our ability to continue as a going concern depend on our capability to obtain sufficient external equity or debt financing. If we do not succeed in doing so, we may need to curtail our operations, which could adversely affect our business, results of operations, financial position and cash flows.
We expect to continue to generate operating losses for the foreseeable future until the start of production of the Sion and possibly later. While we seek to increase monetization of our technology, we do not anticipate that we will generate commercial revenue or positive operating cash flows from vehicle sales of the Sion until the start of production or later. Management anticipates in its current plan that the Sion will generate high one-digits gross margins in the mid-term after start of production (SOP). In addition, management expects revenues from emission certificate pooling under relevant EU regulations on CO2 target emissions (“CO2 pooling”) and from the monetization of their solar technology and other expected revenues from after-sales and the sharing business.
Our ability to continue as a going concern is largely dependent on our ability to raise additional funds through debt or equity transactions, additional advance payments, or other means, and ultimately, to achieve serial production of the Sion. It is uncertain if sufficient financing can be obtained to continue as a going concern and further to achieve serial production of the Sion. Our forecast cash required to fund operations, excluding future financing efforts, indicates that we do not have sufficient funds to support operations through the twelve-month period from the date of issuance of the condensed consolidated interim financial statements included in this prospectus. Accordingly, there is substantial doubt about our ability to continue as a going concern within twelve-months from the date of issuance of these financial statements. Based on the cash position as of August 31, 2021 and our business plan, excluding any targeted proceeds from an initial
 
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public offering, as of August 31, 2021, the Group would become insolvent by December 2021 or shortly thereafter if no additional financing can be raised. See Note 3.1 to the unaudited condensed consolidated interim financial statements included in this prospectus for further discussion on our ability to continue as a going concern.
There is no historical basis for reliably assessing the demand for our vehicles, our ability to develop, manufacture, and deliver the Sion or any other car model that we may roll out in the future, and our future profitability. There can be no assurance that the Sion, or any other model that we may roll out in the future, will be commercially successful or that we will be able to scale our operations. We have no reliable basis for the prediction of our future revenues and to appropriately budget for our expenses, and we may have limited insight into future trends that may emerge and affect our business. You should consider our business and prospects in light of the risks and challenges we face as a new entrant into our industry, including, but not limited to:

our ability to successfully launch the commercial production and sales of the Sion and to continuously advance our current and develop new technologies;

develop and manufacture safe, reliable and quality vehicles that appeal to customers, the challenges relating to the delivery and servicing of a large volume of vehicles;

raise funding and required to develop our business and reach commercial operation;

our ability to turn profitable and build a well-recognized and respected brand cost-effectively;

the ability to expand our vehicle line-up and navigate the evolving regulatory environment;

improve and maintain our operational efficiency, set up and manage our supply chain efficiently and adapt to changing market conditions, including technological developments and changes in our competitive landscape; and

find the necessary qualified personnel, build up and scale functioning structures within our company as well as manage our growth effectively.
Our ability to develop vehicles is unproven and we may fail to finalize development and realize the commercialization of the Sion within the intended timeframe, budget or at all.
Our success will depend in large part on our ability to execute our plans to develop and produce the Sion. The successful development of the Sion is and will be subject to various risks and it will be difficult for us to develop other car models. We will need to implement technology that ensures that solar modules placed in different locations of the body work well together. Our vehicles will incorporate various other complex components, which requires substantial engineering and development efforts. There is no guarantee that our efforts will be successful and that we will be able to realize all advertised specifications of the Sion such as, for example, the advertised battery range or daily solar based range of our vehicles. We will have to finalize development of the electric powertrain and its components, which will be crucial for the range capacities of our vehicles. We have to secure the supply of necessary components on acceptable terms. We will also need to engage in substantive testing collision and safety activities, which we have not yet started. The Sion will need to pass relevant safety standards and will need to meet stringent and constantly evolving safety and road certification requirements, potentially in various jurisdictions, and there is no guarantee that our vehicles will receive the required street certification from relevant authorities. In addition, we will have to engage in significant testing activities to ensure that the Sion meets customers’ expectations, including with respect to performance and durability. Given the complexities involved in developing and testing a solar electric vehicle for the mass market, there is no guarantee that we will be able to finalize the development of the Sion within the given timeframe or budget. We may even conclude that finalization of the development is not feasible and that we have to abandon the project, due to, for example, a change in the regulatory framework, lack of feasibility, lack of supplier capacity or availability, lack of customer demand or our inability to secure sufficient capital. In such a case, we may not be able to amortize any investments made until the relevant point in time at which such a decision is made. We may have invested significant resources and time into the development of the Sion, our technology or solutions and may also have entered into contractual arrangements with suppliers or other partners in such a context under which we may be subjected to continuous payment or other obligations irrespective of our decision to abandon the
 
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relevant underlying project. Any such decision to discontinue the development or offering of the Sion or any of our technologies or solutions would lead to significant losses.
We will initially depend largely on a single car model, the Sion.
We intend to initially derive the majority of our revenues from the production and sale of a single car model, the Sion. Our success and future profitability will substantially depend on the Sion’s commercial success and market acceptance. To the extent that our product offering does not meet consumer expectations, or cannot be achieved on our projected timelines as well as cost and volume targets, our future profitability may be adversely affected. There is no guarantee that we will be able to market the Sion at the price and with the technical capabilities we currently envisage. We anticipate the purchase price of the Sion to be a significant competitive advantage, but the initial targeted net sales price of the Sion of €21.4 thousand will not allow us to generate a profit (not including expected revenues from emission certificate pooling under relevant EU regulations on CO2 target emissions (“CO2 pooling”), the monetization of our solar technology or other expected revenues). We currently plan to increase the initial net sales price, which may negatively impact demand for the Sion and our reputation. In addition to this planned increase in the sales price, we may need to make further upward adjustments of the sales price of the Sion as we finalize its development due to changes in technical specifications, production or component costs or otherwise, which may result in higher than anticipated production cost. In addition, our standard configuration with a standard price for our vehicles may not be as effective as we intend. We intend to deliver our vehicles with technology features that may be offered as costly add-ons by our competitors. Customers may prefer personalized features based on diversified tastes and needs and we may not be able to meet various customer needs. We may have overestimated the demand for the Sion and if the production volume of our vehicles is lower than originally planned this may negatively affect the costs per car produced. We may have overly focused or may continue to overly focus on (perceived) key strengths and selling points of the Sion, such as its expected affordability and environmental friendliness, while neglecting other material product aspects or components, such as our vehicles’ passive or active safety, including driver assistance systems, or standard parts such as brakes or airbags, which may negatively affect our vehicles’ overall performance, safety, reputation and sales volume. In addition, our intended distribution model is different from the distribution models typically used by other car manufacturers, as we plan to sell vehicles directly to our customers over the internet, rather than through traditional dealerships or company-owned retail stores. This direct sales model may result in lower sales due to customer reluctance to rely on web-based vehicle purchasing, which is particularly relevant for us as we are still in the process of developing our brand and depend on the initial success of the Sion. There can also be no assurance that we will be able to broaden our portfolio by successfully developing additional car models. The currently envisaged start of the production of the Sion in the first half of 2023 and customers may be unwilling to wait and decide to purchase other products that are or will be available earlier.
Customers may cancel their reservations for the Sion without penalty.
We have recorded reservations from potential customers for the Sion. At times, we have indicated that if we are able to sell every Sion that has been reserved, we would have revenues of a certain amount. However, our customers may cancel a reservation without penalty according to our general terms and conditions, if no binding purchase agreement has been concluded by an agreed deadline. The relevant deadline agreed on with the customers reflected the start of serial production envisaged by us at the time the relevant reservations were made. The timing of such permitted cancellations varies, as we have amended our general terms and conditions extending the relevant cancellation deadline to reflect delays of the intended commencement of serial production of our vehicles. We have also asked some of our customers to agree to amendments of our terms and conditions that extended the date at which customers may cancel a reservation. However, not all customers who previously placed a reservation have yet accepted such amended terms and conditions. According to our terms and conditions, customers have the right to cancel their reservations without penalty at the time at which we ask them to sign a binding purchase agreement for a Sion.
To date, none of our customers has entered into a binding purchase agreement with us for our vehicles and we do not expect binding purchase agreements to be signed, at the earliest, until one year prior to the expected delivery date of a vehicle to the relevant customer. In the event of a customer’s cancellation we are obligated to refund any advance payments already paid in connection with the reservation; thus, a
 
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significant number of reservation cancellations could impact our liquidity. The anticipated lead times between customer reservations and the expected first delivery of the Sion may exacerbate the risk of cancellations. We have already had to delay the start of production, which has resulted in some cancellations, and any further delay in the launch of serial production may lead to additional cancellations. In order to mitigate the effect of delays of the expected start of the production of the Sion on our customers, we had entered into a cooperation with a traditional car manufacturer and for a limited period offered our customers the option to convert parts of their advance payment into a lease arrangement for another electric vehicle at a discount until the delivery of the Sion. We have recently renewed this offer to our customers under slightly modified conditions and, in addition, alternatively offered them to lease a vehicle at discounted conditions from a start-up car rental company with a focus on sustainability. However, such cooperation and offers expose us to additional costs, obligations and risks, and there is no guarantee that such initiatives will ultimately have the intended effect on customer loyalty. In addition, even if we enter into binding purchase agreements with our customers, customers may, under certain circumstances, terminate such purchase agreement within two weeks after its conclusion under a principle of EU law relating to consumer protection in relation to distance contracts (Fernabsatzverträge) that do not involve face-to-face contact between us and customers. This principle would generally obligate us to take back the sold vehicle and refund the customer’s purchase price. Such principles applicable to distance contracts also apply to reservations. We may have also accidentally accepted reservations by customers from jurisdictions into which we will or may not be allowed to deliver our vehicles, leading to the cancellation of such reservations and the potential for reputational damage. As a result, there is no assurance that reservations will ultimately result in the purchase of a vehicle or that we actually realize our revenue expectations. Any projected revenue derived from reservations is based on a number of assumptions, including a projected purchase price for our vehicles. If the purchase price of our vehicles ends up being lower than anticipated, we may not achieve our projected level of revenue, even if all of our cars currently reserved are sold or otherwise commercialized. In addition, certain of our customers used the online payment system PayPal for their reservations and advance payments. We have not been able to immediately access these funds due to PayPal’s relevant terms and conditions and may have to wait a substantial amount of time before PayPal releases these funds to us. It cannot be precluded that future advance payments made via PayPal may be subject to similar restrictions.
We intend to benefit from additional revenue opportunities, but may not be able to commercialize these platforms.
Apart from generating revenue from sales of the Sion, we also plan to generate revenue from CO2 pooling and the monetization of our solar technology.
Under the relevant EU regulations, a car manufacturer may enter into CO2 pooling arrangements with other car manufacturers to avoid, or reduce, penalty payments, if it pools its emissions with those of manufacturers of zero- or low-emission vehicles. The economic benefit is shared among the pooling participations, potentially providing a manufacturer of zero- or low-emission vehicles with an additional source of revenue. However, it remains uncertain whether such CO2 pooling will be legally feasible in the future after the start of the serial production of our vehicles. The relevant regulatory framework may change and/or other car manufacturers may be less dependent on CO2 pooling than we expected. The unavailability, reduction or elimination of any relevant government and economic incentives could have a material adverse effect on the development of the e-mobility market, our business, prospects, financial condition and operating results. In addition, our potential to benefit from CO2 pooling may be lower than anticipated if traditional car manufacturers develop and produce their own alternative fuel vehicles to reduce their fleet-wide average emissions or if competitors would enter into CO2 pooling arrangements with traditional car manufacturers before us.
We also intend to monetize our technology based on licensing arrangements with third parties and royalty payments and we may also consider the development, general contracting and sale of certain selected solar components to third parties. However, there is no guarantee that we will be able to successfully finalize the development and commence commercialization of our technology on a large scale, particularly if our technologies are not as well received, functional or efficient as expected or should we face significant competition with respect to our technologies. The licensing of our technologies also requires patent-based or similar legal protection and there is no guarantee that we will obtain such protection in a timely manner, in the relevant jurisdictions or at all. We may fail to identify technical innovations that could be patentable
 
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and, accordingly, may fail to protect them via patents. In addition, we have already received purchase orders or entered into several letters of intent for partnerships, including with manufacturers of trailers, autonomous electric shuttles, trains, trucks, buses and yachts. There is, however, no guarantee that we will be able to enter into final and binding commercial agreements with such manufacturers and ultimately monetize our technology.
We intend to deploy technologies and solutions in our vehicles, including our solar module technology, which may not be fully functional or available on our anticipated schedule or at all, and may remain unproven and pose additional risks.
The Sion will make use of certain of our technological innovations and solutions, including our solar module technology, our MCU, our on-board charger, our power sharing solution and our software and mobile application solution that is tailored to our power sharing solution and provides the backbone for our car-sharing and ride-pooling networks. We also plan to offer our own aftersales, self-service system based on an online database providing manuals and tutorials. The functionality, usability and availability of our technologies and solutions in the day-to-day use of our vehicles and at scale is unproven. Our technology has not yet been tested in industrial production. The relevant production machines that turn our technology into actual products at industrial scale have not yet been developed. There is no guarantee that our vehicles will initially perform as expected under daily driving conditions or that we will be able to detect and fix any potential weaknesses in our vehicles’ technology, hardware or software prior to commencing serial production. For example, our solar modules and/or our batteries may not provide the expected additional range advantage compared to traditional battery electric vehicles or may be less reliable or more expensive to produce than expected. In addition, our solar modules may be subject to accelerated corrosion due to the impact of thermal expansion. An early prototype version of our integrated solar modules rippled and showed optical deviations when intensely exposed to the sun for an extended period of time. While we believe that we have found the reason for these issues, we cannot guarantee that they will not recur. Defects in our integrated solar modules may lead to the ignition of our vehicles and may cause bodily harm. Furthermore, defects or inappropriate use of our power sharing solutions and insufficient safety measures could lead to bodily harm, short circuits and fire damage to our vehicles or any device or facility they are connected to. Additional risks may result from the use of any of our other technologies or solutions in jurisdictions where such use is not lawful and which we may not successfully control. For example, our power sharing solution may be used in jurisdictions where any of such power sharing options may not be lawful thereby exposing us or individuals to significant liability risks. Our car-sharing and ride-pooling offering may be subject to restrictive laws on passenger transportation and may also be overall less accepted by our customers than anticipated or compared to similar commercial offerings such as Zipcar or Sharenow.
Any of the technologies we intend to use in the Sion or solutions we expect to offer may not be available or fully functional at the time of the first deliveries of our vehicles or at all. There is no guarantee that our aftersales and self-service database will be fully functional or include all required manuals, tutorials or other relevant content to address all customer concerns and issues at the beginning of the market introduction of the Sion. Our self-service approach may be less accepted by our customers than expected. Customers may prefer an all-around carefree service and we may also not be able to successfully establish and offer a service partner network to our customers for an all-around carefree service for their vehicles as currently intended, in time or at all. In addition, questions concerning the warranty for repairs carried out by customers are still unresolved. Our car-sharing and ride-pooling application is based on complex information technology and may, for example, not be fully functional when first introduced or may not offer all relevant functions. Any impairment to the function or availability of our software applications may limit offerings associated with it and may make our car- and ride-sharing networks, as well as power sharing solutions, unavailable or less practical. Furthermore, not all of our technologies, such as our car-sharing and ride-pooling software application, are or will be protected by patents, which may negatively affect our ability to, directly or indirectly, realize or monetize such technologies.
We depend on the adequate protection of our intellectual property, which can be difficult and costly.
We invest significant resources in the development of technologies and hold several patents relating to our technological innovations to be included in the Sion, such as our solar module technology, ventilation system and our bidirectional charging technology. We consider these technologies and the related patents to
 
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be crucial for the commercial success of our vehicles. To establish and protect our rights in our technology, we rely on a combination of patents, trade secrets (including know-how), copyrights, trademarks, intellectual property licenses, employee and third-party nondisclosure agreements and other contractual rights.
The measures we take to protect our intellectual property from unauthorized use by others may not be effective for various reasons. Any patent applications we submit may not result in the issuance of patents, the scope of our issued patents may not be broad enough to protect our proprietary rights or our issued patents may be challenged and/or invalidated by our competitors. Any successful challenge to any of our intellectual property rights could deprive us of rights necessary for the successful commercialization of our vehicles or any technology relating thereto. Challenges to our patents could impair or eliminate our ability to collect future revenues and royalties on our technologies. The patent prosecution process is expensive, time consuming and complicated, and we and our future licensors may not be able to file, prosecute or maintain all necessary or desirable patents applications at a reasonable cost or in a timely manner or in all jurisdictions where protection may be commercially advantageous. It is also possible that we and our future licensors may fail to identify patentable aspects of our research and development output before it is too late to obtain patent protection. We filed and intend to continue to file trademark applications in relevant jurisdictions but may be unable to register our trademarks or otherwise protect them. For example, we have failed to obtain protection for our circle with a dot in the middle, if it is not combined with other distinctive elements. In China, our trademark application for our circle with a dot in the middle, the Sono name, and the combination of the Sono name and our circle with a dot in the middle has been objected to. Our efforts to register a trademark may be subject to oppositions and if a third-party were to register our trademarks, or similar trademarks, in a jurisdiction where we have not successfully registered such trademark, it could create a barrier to the successful commercialization of our vehicles. Failure to adequately protect our intellectual property rights could result in our competitors offering similar products, potentially resulting in the loss of some of our competitive advantage as well as a decrease in our revenue, which would adversely affect our business, prospects, financial condition and operating results.
Even if we hold valid and enforceable patents or other intellectual property rights, the legal systems of certain countries, including certain developing countries, may not favor the enforcement of these rights or otherwise offer the same degree of protection as do the laws in the EU or United States, which could make it difficult for us to stop the infringement, misappropriation, or other violation of our patents or other intellectual property rights. Further, policing the unauthorized use of our intellectual property in various jurisdictions around the world may be difficult and require significant resources.
We have applied for patent protection relating to our technological innovations to be included in the Sion in certain jurisdictions. While we generally consider applying for patents in those countries where we intend to make, have made, use, or sell patented products, we may not accurately assess all the countries where patent protection will ultimately be desirable. If we fail to timely file a patent application in any such country, we may be precluded from doing so at a later date. Furthermore, our pending patent applications may be challenged by third parties or such applications may not eventually be issued by the applicable patent offices as patents. In addition, the patents issued as a result of our foreign patent applications may not have the same scope of coverage as our patents in the EU or United States.
Changes in the patent laws or their interpretation in the relevant jurisdictions may reduce our ability to protect our inventions and enforce our intellectual property rights. More generally, these changes could affect the value of our patents and other intellectual property. Our efforts in seeking patent protection for our technology could be negatively impacted by any such changes, which could have a material adverse effect on our existing patent rights and our ability to protect and enforce our intellectual property rights in the future. In particular, our ability to stop third parties from making, using, selling, offering to sell or importing products that infringe our intellectual property rights will depend in part on our success in obtaining and enforcing patent claims that cover our technology, inventions and improvements.
In some cases, we rely upon unpatented proprietary manufacturing expertise, continuing technological innovation, and other trade secrets to develop and maintain our competitive position. While we generally will enter into confidentiality agreements with our employees and third parties to protect our intellectual property, our confidentiality agreements could be breached and may not provide meaningful protection against improper use of our trade secrets or other proprietary information. There can be no assurance that third parties will not seek to gain access to our trade secrets or other proprietary information. In addition, adequate
 
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remedies may not be available in the event of unauthorized use or disclosure of our trade secrets or other proprietary information. Violations by others of our confidentiality agreements and the loss of employees who have specialized knowledge and expertise could harm our competitive position and cause our sales and operating results to decline as a result of increased competition.
Our patent applications may not lead to the granting of patents or desired protection in time or at all, which may have a material adverse effect on our ability to prevent others from commercially exploiting products similar to ours.
We cannot be certain that we are the first inventor of the subject matter to which a particular patent application pertains. If another party has filed a patent application pertaining to the same subject matter as we have, we may not be entitled to the protection sought by our patent application. Patent applications in many jurisdictions are typically not published until several months after filing and we cannot be certain that we were the first to make the inventions claimed in any of our issued patents or pending patent applications, or that we were the first to file for protection of the inventions set forth in our patents or patent applications. As a result, we may not be able to obtain or maintain protection for certain inventions and may face similar risks in other jurisdictions should we expand our operations, including in significant vehicle markets such as the United States and China.
Further, the scope of protection of issued patent claims is often difficult to determine. As a result, we cannot be certain that the patent applications that we file will issue, or that our issued patents will afford protection against competitors with similar technology. In addition, our competitors may seek to bypass our issued patents, which may adversely affect our business, prospects, financial condition or operating results. We cannot offer any assurances about which, if any, patents will issue, the breadth of any such patents or whether any issued patents will be found invalid or unenforceable or will be threatened by third parties.
We have no experience with using common vehicle platforms, such as our “one base” vehicle platform, in the design and manufacture of our vehicles.
The Sion is engineered on a common vehicle platform (“one base”), which means that we intend to use this platform for new vehicle types and the planned expansion of our product portfolio. We have no experience with using a common platform in the design and manufacture of vehicles. The design of the Sion and our “one base” platform is not complete. We may make changes to the design of the Sion or the platform that may make it more difficult to use the platform for future vehicles. There is no guarantee that we will be able to use the “one base” platform to bring future vehicle models to market faster or at lower cost or that there will be sufficient customer demand for additional vehicle variants of this platform.
Any delay in commercial production of the Sion could adversely affect us
The start of the production of the Sion has been delayed and is currently envisaged for the first half of 2023, using preliminary “soft” tools, which will be replaced by permanent “hard” tools at a later point in time. Any delay in the scheduled production, manufacture or commercial release of the Sion due to, for example, our inability to successfully complete the development of the Sion, obtain sufficient financing, comply with relevant regulatory provisions and obtain street certification for the Sion or any failure by our suppliers or business partners to meet agreed upon timelines could reduce interest in our vehicles and subject the Sion to unfavorable changes in the regulatory environment over time, such as legal requirements to include certain driver assistance technologies in our vehicles, which may be costly or difficult and costly to implement.
Any delay in the production or delivery of the Sion as currently envisioned or any other future car model could threaten our future existence as a business and may adversely affect our growth prospects. Any delay in the financing, design and launch of the Sion or other car models that we may roll out in the future could lead to the cancellation of reservations or termination or non-extension of relationships with any of our business partners and may materially damage our brand, business, prospects, financial condition and operating results. In order to mitigate the effect of delays of the expected start of the production of the Sion on our customers, we had entered into a cooperation with a traditional car manufacturer and for a limited period offered our customers the option to convert parts of their advance payment into a lease arrangement for another electric vehicle at a discount until the delivery of the Sion. We have recently renewed
 
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this offer to our customers under slightly modified conditions and, in addition, alternatively offered them to lease a vehicle at discounted conditions from a start-up car rental company, which claims to focus on sustainability. However, such cooperation and offers expose us to additional costs, obligations and risks, including reputational risks, and there is no guarantee that such initiatives will ultimately have the intended effect on customer loyalty. Any future delay of the start of series production of our vehicles could force us to set up similar initiatives, which could lead to substantial cash outflows and negatively affect our financial results, reputation and business.
We may not be able to develop manufacturing processes and capabilities within our projected costs and timelines.
Our asset-light business model provides for the outsourcing of the production of our vehicles and the sourcing of off-the-shelf components from suppliers, as well as outsourced logistics and delivery management based on low inventories. We have no experience to date in manufacturing vehicles through our production partner on a high volume basis or at all or in supply chain management. We do not know whether we will be able to secure efficient, low-cost manufacturing capabilities and to implement automated manufacturing processes. We also may not be able to secure reliable sources of component supply. Any failure to meet the required quality, price, engineering, design and production standards, as well as the production volumes, may negatively impact our ability to successfully mass market the Sion or other future car models. The injection-molding based production process of our solar module technology or other relevant production technologies may not be as efficiently scalable as expected or, if scaled, may lead to a higher number of product defects than anticipated (due to, for example, increased breakage of solar cells during the injection molding process). Even if we are successful in developing our high volume manufacturing capability and processes and reliably source our component supply, we do not know whether we will be able to do so in a manner that avoids significant delays and cost overruns, including as a result of factors beyond our control such as problems with suppliers or logistics, or in time to meet our vehicle commercialization schedules or to satisfy the requirements of customers. Any failure to develop such manufacturing processes and capabilities within our projected costs and timelines could have a material adverse effect on our business, prospects, operating results and financial condition.
Our ability to manufacture vehicles of sufficient quality and appeal to customers on schedule and at scale is unproven and still evolving and we may not be able to commercialize our vehicles.
Our success will depend in large part on our ability to execute our plans to market and sell the Sion as well as other car models that we may roll out at a later point in time. There is no guarantee that we will be able to successfully commercialize the Sion or other potential future car models in time or at all.
The successful conclusion of the commercial introduction, as well as the rollout of future car models, is and will be subject to various risks, including with respect to:

customer acceptance of our brand and the Sion and willingness to purchase our vehicles instead of more established brands;

our ability to secure necessary funding to complete development and launch of the Sion and maintain our operating expenses until we generate sufficient revenue to meet our costs;

the third-party production partner (NEVS) we plan to use being able to manufacture the Sion or other cars within defined design, tolerances, quality and quantity specifications;

our other business partners, such as suppliers and logistics services providers, providing their products and services according to our needs and specifications;

the scalability of our operations and the production of the Sion;

long- and short-term durability of the relevant e-mobility technology, particularly our proprietary solar module technology based on polymer technology, and other related components in the day-to-day wear and tear of the vehicles;

compliance with environmental, workplace safety and similar regulations;

securing necessary components and raw materials for our vehicles on acceptable terms and in a timely manner;
 
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delays and disruptions in the delivery process of our suppliers or other business partners;

our ability to attract, recruit, hire and train and retain skilled employees;

quality controls;

delays or disruptions in our supply chain;

other delays and cost overruns; and

unforeseen market developments in a rapidly evolving market environment.
We have yet to acquire the adequate hard tooling, i.e., metal tools that offer high repeatability and reproduction accuracy as well as high processing speed and tool stability, for the long-term serial production of our vehicles according to our timelines and may not be able to procure such tooling in time or at all, particularly if we do not secure the required funding. The currently envisaged start of the production of the Sion in the first half of 2023 will include a first series of vehicles manufactured with soft tooling, which are plastic tools that result in greater dimensional tolerances and higher tool wear, but are much simpler and thus more cost-effective to produce. Soft tools will not allow for the production of our vehicles at the required quality and quantity in the long-run. We will not be able to secure the production of vehicles according to our timelines and demands without hard tooling. There is also no guarantee that we will be able to successfully ramp up the production of the Sion once its serial production has been started.
We depend on National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS) for production of the Sion.
We intend to outsource the Sion’s production to National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS) in Trollhättan, Sweden. NEVS is a pure electric vehicle designer and manufacturer founded in 2012 that inherited SAAB’s corporate history. However, NEVS has not taken over SAAB’s workforce and NEVS’s current or future employees may not achieve the quality or quantity levels of the former SAAB workforce. There is no guarantee that NEVS will manufacture vehicles that correspond to our specifications and quality expectations. NEVS is controlled by a Chinese enterprise (Evergrande New Energy Vehicle Group or Evergrande), which may subject NEVS, directly or indirectly, to political and economic pressure or measures, particularly if the relationship between other countries, including the United States, and China were to deteriorate. We currently maintain a friendly and very constructive relationship with the management team of NEVS. Evergrande may, however, at any time decide to replace the current management team, which could adversely affect our business relationship with NEVS. Pursuant to the confirmation of the nomination letter between NEVS and us, if we have a new major shareholder who is a direct competitor to NEVS or Evergrande, NEVS reserves the right at its sole discretion to terminate the letter. We have not provided for an alternative manufacturing approach should our cooperation with NEVS be threatened or not come into existence. Recent events, such as failure to pay interest on outstanding indebtedness on its due date, suggested that Evergrande faces liquidity challenges. These challenges will likely negatively affect NEVS and could lead to a sale of NEVS by Evergrande. We may be forced to renegotiate our arrangements with NEVS or to search for a new manufacturer. We may also decide to take over the NEVS’ employees that are required for the production of the Sion or reimburse NEVS or its owner for their salaries, which would lead to a significant increase in pre-production expenses and would require us to raise more financing sooner than anticipated. There can be no guarantee that we will be able to find a suitable replacement for NEVS. In addition, outsourcing generally requires the sharing of material proprietary knowledge, trade secrets and other sensitive information and we or NEVS may not be able to implement effective measures to adequately protect our proprietary information, or other intellectual property, against misadministration, misuse, misappropriation, unauthorized access or loss.
Our asset-light business model provides for the sourcing of off-the-shelf components from suppliers based on a single-source approach.
Various standard automotive parts of the Sion will be off-the-shelf components developed by, and sourced from, third-party suppliers. With respect to our suppliers we rely on a “single-source” approach and have selected, or intend to select, one single supplier for a specific car component. This makes our supply chain and the production of our vehicles particularly dependent on the performance of our suppliers and increases the risks of interruption. Our operations will be negatively affected if one of our suppliers experiences
 
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capacity constraints and is not in a position to deliver the required quantities of a certain component or part. Single-sourcing also increases the bargaining power of the relevant suppliers, which may expose us to abusive conduct or may require us to accept disadvantageous economic or legal conditions. We may also be forced to stop production should a supplier fail to provide required certifications for its products or should the supplier be accused of infringing or misappropriating third-party intellectual property rights. Many suppliers depend on a small number of established car manufacturers. Suppliers may be significantly impacted and may be forced to close their operations, should any of these established car manufacturers lose significant market share or file for bankruptcy. If we need to replace a supplier or if a supplier terminates its relationship with us, there is no guarantee that we will be able to find adequate substitute products or suppliers in time or at all. In addition, COVID-19-related measures may also affect the availability of products and materials. Furthermore, it is possible that the supplier does not have the right to sell the relevant product to us, for example, because the supplier lacks the intellectual property rights to the design or because the supplier has an exclusivity agreement with another vehicle manufacturer, which we could force us to discontinue production or sales of the Sion, to replace the part or to change the design of the Sion, which could result in significant delays and costs or make the production of the Sion impossible altogether.
Our vehicles depend on the development, production, performance and durability of batteries being engineered by a single supplier.
The competitiveness and performance of our vehicles depend on the supply and performance of batteries. We have engaged a supplier with the development and production of our lithium-iron phosphate batteries. We are fully dependent on this supplier and any delay or disruption in the development and production of, as well as the supply of batteries from, such supplier could significantly delay or disrupt our own envisioned timelines or the production of our vehicles. Our timeline for the development and production of our vehicles as well as the timeline for the development of the batteries by the supplier are tightly aligned and we may not be able to replace such supplier or its batteries in time or at all without any significant delay or disruption of our own operations should this supplier not be able to develop and deliver batteries on time or at the required quality or quantities. Any other battery cell manufacturer may choose to refuse to supply electric vehicle manufacturers to the extent they determine that the relevant vehicles are not sufficiently safe.
The production of lithium-iron phosphate batteries is exposed to multiple risks, which may not be adequately addressed by our arrangement with our supplier. These risks include the inability or unwillingness of battery manufacturers to build or operate battery cell manufacturing plants to supply the numbers of lithium-iron phosphate blade cells required to support the growth of the electric vehicle industry as demand for such blade cells may increase steeply, a disruption in the supply of lithium-iron phosphate blade cells due to quality issues or recalls by the battery blade cell manufacturer and an increase in the cost of raw materials used in lithium-iron phosphate cells.
Based on calculations performed by us, we currently expect that the batteries developed by our supplier and to be used in our vehicles will provide a range based on the WLTP standard of up to 305 kilometers, or up to 190 miles, until they have to be recharged. These specifications reflect our current development targets, and there is no guarantee that the batteries will actually have such a range or will represent the state of the art once being integrated in and delivered with the Sion. Even if the batteries sourced from such supplier generally perform as expected, there is no guarantee that we will be able to successfully integrate them in our vehicles and that they will show the same performance in our vehicles as generally specified by the supplier. In addition, based on our simulations, we currently expect a certain decline in the Sion’s battery capacity over its lifespan, which will lead to a decrease in the range of our vehicles. Other factors such as usage, time and stress patterns may also impact the battery’s ability to hold a charge, which would decrease our vehicles’ range. Such battery deterioration and the related decrease in range may negatively influence potential customer decisions and may adversely affect the commercialization of the Sion and our business operations.
Increases in costs, disruption of supply or shortage of raw materials or certain products could harm our business.
Once commercial production of the Sion begins, NEVS, which will produce our vehicles, or any of our suppliers may experience increases in the cost or a sustained interruption in the supply or shortage of raw
 
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materials required for the production of our vehicles or certain parts or components used in them. Our vehicles depend on various raw materials and products, including aluminum, steel, carbon fiber, non-ferrous metals (such as copper) or anti-freeze heat transfer fluid based on propane diol, corrosion inhibitors, certain polycarbonate blends and computer chips. The prices for these materials and products may fluctuate depending on market conditions. Some products, such as computer chips, may not be available at all in the short term.
Substantial increases in the prices for raw materials and/or increases in freight charges would increase our operating costs and could reduce our margins if the increased costs cannot be recouped through increased vehicle prices. There can be no assurance that we will be able to recoup increasing costs of raw materials by increasing vehicle prices.
We intend to outsource logistics management of our operations to third-party logistics (3PL) and potentially fourth-party logistics (4PL) services providers.
We plan to outsource the inbound and outbound logistics management of our operations to third-party logistics (3PL) services providers that will provide comprehensive supply chain, transport, distribution management and execution services while we may also engage a fourth-party logistics (4PL) services provider who will oversee the transportation and logistics operations of our 3PL services companies. Involving external logistics providers entails risks. These include delays, the inefficient logistics management by a 3PL or 4PL services provider or trade restrictions, embargos or COVID-19-related measures affecting supply chain management, including cross border shipments.
We have yet to enter into contractual agreements with many of our prospective suppliers and business partners and may have to renegotiate these agreements as we scale our business.
We will need to finalize our contractual arrangement with many of our prospective suppliers and business partners. Our arrangement with NEVS, the third-party manufacturer expected to produce the Sion, is of a preliminary and basic nature and various aspects of our commercial and legal relationship with NEVS, as well as details of the production of the Sion, will have to be clarified and stipulated in a finalized principal contractual framework with NEVS in advance of the production of our vehicles. Negotiations with NEVS may consume significant resources and time and there is no guarantee that such negotiations will be concluded successfully. In the negotiations, we may agree to terms and conditions that are less favorable to us than expected. For example, the production cost per single car may be ultimately higher than currently expected due to various factors many of which are beyond our control including currency exchange rates as NEVS will invoice us in Swedish krona for the production of the Sion. We may be subject to unfavorable rules on the transfer of risk with respect to our vehicles or supplied components or disadvantageous payment terms. Any failure to finalize our arrangement with NEVS in a timely manner may lead to a delay in the production and delivery of the Sion. Terms and conditions (including production costs) of any contractual arrangement, including any preliminary contractual arrangement, may have to be again renegotiated due to a lapse of time or a change in material circumstances should we not be able to realize the anticipated timelines.
We have yet to conclude contractual agreements with many other suppliers and other prospective business partners and may not be able to reach such agreements at favorable terms, in a timely manner or at all. Prospective suppliers and business partners may end their relationship or negotiations with us for various reasons. Many of the suppliers we involve, or intend to involve, are renowned market players with significant bargaining power and whose position towards us is bolstered due to our single-source approach. We, on the other hand, are not an established business and have limited market power. We may therefore not be able to successfully assert our own interests and may enter into contracts with significantly disadvantageous terms and conditions, such as unfavorable prices, limitations on remedies in cases of breach of contract, unfair liquidated damages provisions or broad termination rights allowing our business partners to end their relationship with us at will. If we successfully launch and market the Sion, we will seek to scale our operations. We may have to renegotiate, amend or extend any of our relationships with our business partners and there is no guarantee that we will be successful in doing so. We may incur substantial additional costs and expenses should we have to amend our business model to scaled operations and we may even fail to do so.
 
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The involvement of numerous third parties in our operations and processes adds significant complexity.
The involvement of numerous third parties in our operations and processes adds significant complexity and dependency. There is no guarantee that we will reach the required synchronization among all these parties to successfully produce our vehicles and scale our operations. The logistics processes in our business model (including in-bound logistics such as the shipping of car components from various suppliers to NEVS’ factory for the assembly of various auto parts, as well as out-bound logistics such as the delivery of our vehicles to customers or hubs) may be more complex, complicated and costly than originally anticipated. The high degree of involvement of third parties is challenging for our IT-systems and interfaces. The resulting complexity may require us to introduce SAP S4/HANA, which may lead to cost increases. In addition, the introduction of SAP S4/HANA may be more time consuming and/or costly than we currently expect. Further vulnerability to our operations is added by the fact that we intend to run the production of the Sion as a one-variant-only model based on a low inventory and “just in time” strategy, which requires particularly precise coordination among NEVS, our suppliers, the 3PL and 4PL services providers and us as well as prompt delivery by all of the foregoing. We will not maintain a back stock of inventory or material and any supply chain issue, such as price increases in raw materials, shortages, natural disasters, trade disputes or political tensions can adversely affect our operations.
We depend on the acceptance of our brand and any negative publicity relating to any of our business partners and their products or services could have a significant negative impact on our business and reputation.
Introducing a new vehicle brand to compete with existing, established brands presents significant challenges. Establishing our vehicle brand requires substantial resources and we may not succeed in establishing, maintaining and strengthening our brand. We do not intend to maintain a dealership network, which could negatively affect our brand recognition, customer awareness or our ability to provide satisfactory levels of customer service. Our brand and reputation could be severely harmed by negative publicity with respect to us, our directors, officers, employees, shareholders, peers, business partners, customers or our industry in general. Any misconduct by, or negative publicity relating to, any of our business partners and their products or services could have a significant negative impact on our business and reputation whether or not such publicity is directly related to their collaboration with us. Our ability to successfully build our brand could also be adversely affected by any negative perception about the quality of our business partners’ products or services, if, for example, a certain car component to be used in the Sion does not meet required safety standards or lacks the required or promoted functionality. This aspect is particularly relevant with respect to prominently marketed parts such as the electric batteries for our vehicles. For example, if the batteries show higher than expected self-discharge or provide less than the promoted range, our reputation could be negatively affected and we may be faced with claims for damages. Furthermore, customers may customize their vehicles after delivery or change the charging infrastructure with aftermarket products, which may cause our vehicles not to operate properly, which, in turn, may create negative publicity and could harm our business.
If the Sion or any of our future vehicles fail to perform as expected, our ability to market our electric vehicles could be harmed.
The Sion, or any of our future vehicles, may not perform as expected or may require repair. The Sion will consist of and its performance depend on various complex components supplied by various suppliers, assembled by a third-party manufacturer. There is no guarantee that all product specifications of the Sion, which reflect our current expectations and development targets, will actually be realized at the time of the first deliveries of our vehicles or at all. The software used to operate our vehicles is complex and may contain defects and errors when first introduced. Our asset-light business model and the intended outsourced production of our vehicles by NEVS pose particular challenges to our quality management processes. Our quality management system may not be effective or sufficient and the number of defective vehicles may be substantially higher than anticipated. There can be no assurance that we will be able to detect and fix any defects in the vehicles’ hardware or software prior to commencing customer sales. The risk that we do not detect defects before the launch of the Sion and that the Sion will not comport with previously defined product specifications is heightened by our limited experience in designing, developing and manufacturing cars. We may experience product recalls in the future, which could result in the incurrence of substantial costs
 
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relating to, for example, return shipping costs for defective vehicles and costs associated with the repair of the underlying product defect. Any product recall may consume a significant amount of our resources. Any product defects or any other failure of our vehicles to perform as expected could harm our reputation and result in adverse publicity, lost revenue, delivery delays, product recalls, product liability claims and significant warranty and other expenses, and could have a material adverse impact on our business, financial condition, operating results and prospects.
We make significant use of various communication channels for our public relations activities, including our website and social media, and such activities may expose us to various risks.
We are a young company and increasing brand awareness as well as a close relationship to our community are of utmost importance to us. We keep our community regularly informed and updated about our latest and most important milestones, including the development progress of the Sion, the onboarding of new suppliers and business partners, our technologies or other initiatives involving our community. The information and updates are provided through various online channels (including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and our website and blog). We have devoted and will continue to devote significant time to such publicity work. However, there is no guarantee that our actions and promotional activities will achieve the expected results. Our continuous online activities and the focus on a close relationship with our community could make us more vulnerable than other companies to negative publicity should any of the information shared by us turn out to be unpopular or incorrect. Unfavorable publicity, including due to possibly incorrect content or statements on our website or other channels, a delay in the development and production of the Sion beyond the currently targeted date for the start of serial production or achievements of our competitors, may adversely affect our reputation, impair the relationship to our community and undermine the trust and credibility we have established.
Any perception that our advertisements were overly positive or that we do not live up to our promises may damage our reputation and adversely affect our business.
Not all the specifications and product details we have promoted in our advertisements or public statements may be actually feasible or ultimately implemented in the Sion. There is no guarantee that all product specifications of the Sion, which we advertised and which reflect our current expectations and development targets, will actually be realized at the time of the first deliveries of our vehicles or at all. If advertised key characteristics of our vehicles, such as a specified range advantage based on our solar modules, a certain range of our batteries and a specific entry-price, turn out to be ultimately unrealistic, unfeasible or false, we may be exposed to negative publicity, reputational damage, cancellations, lower orders or even legal claims and litigation. For example, we advertised an interior design element of the Sion based on the integration of selected moss into the dashboard and center console of the vehicle to complement the air filter’s activity. The filter effect of the moss is, however, uncertain. A key aspect of the Sion is the range that we advertise, including the incremental range offered by the solar panels on the vehicle, and so if the Sion does not perform as advertised this could significantly impact our brand and reputation. In addition, our public communications may have contained, or may contain in the future, incorrect information or statements or may be subject to misperception. We often advertise our vehicles with rather general characteristics and specifications that are subject to interpretation, such as “green,” “environmentally friendly” or “battery reach” and any statement relating thereto may spark discussions, challenges or legal claims should any of our customers or other third party have an understanding of these characteristics and specifications that differs from ours.
We also have made and may continue to make commitments to our community aiming at its involvement, such as the announcement that we would reserve one seat in our supervisory board for a community member or that customers would be particularly rewarded for their loyalty. Our brand, reputation and credibility could be significantly harmed should we ultimately not be able to realize or implement any such commitment or statement, in part or in full or as originally contemplated, due to tax, legal, practical or any other reasons and our business may be adversely affected or subjected to litigation or legal proceedings. Any negative publicity, negative customer feedback or reputational damage, whether substantiated or not, may be significantly accelerated through social media due to its immediacy, general anonymity and accessibility as a means of communication. Any of the foregoing could adversely affect our business.
 
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Our advertisements may not have complied in the past and may not comply in the future with all relevant legal requirements.
We cannot guarantee that all of our public statements that qualify as advertisements, or whole advertising campaigns, comply with legal requirements under competition law or other laws, rules or regulations, such as the requirement to include statements on fuel consumption and CO2 emissions in certain advertisements. Any non-compliance could lead to administrative fines and may result in us being required to discontinue a campaign. We may also be forced to publicly correct incorrect statements. Any of the foregoing could adversely affect our reputation and brand and our business.
Our distribution model is different from the distribution model typically used by other car manufacturers.
We intend to sell our vehicles directly to our customers over the internet rather than through traditional dealerships or company-owned retail stores. This model of vehicle distribution is relatively new and its long-term effectiveness is unproven. It subjects us to substantial risk as it requires, in the aggregate, significant expenditures and provides for slower expansion of our distribution and sales systems than may be possible by utilizing the traditional dealership system. For example, we will not be able to utilize long established sales channels developed through a dealership system to increase our sales volume. Moreover, we will be competing with car manufacturers with well established distribution channels. Our success will depend in large part on our ability to effectively develop our own sales channels and marketing strategies and our inability to successfully implement such a distribution model could adversely affect our business, reputation, results of operations, financial condition and prospects.
We have no experience servicing our vehicles. If we are unable to address the service requirements of our customers, our business will be materially and adversely affected.
We intend to offer our own innovative aftersales service and maintenance platform that will primarily focus on inexpensive repairs and “do-it-yourself” maintenance based on an online database and video manuals accessible for our customers and independent car workshops while we also plan to maintain our own network of cooperating service partners.
However, we do not have experience servicing, repairing or maintaining our vehicles. There is no guarantee that our innovative service concept will be successful and be able to meet customers’ needs or preferences. Traditional car manufacturers typically maintain a broad network of car dealerships where customers can bring their vehicles for servicing and maintenance. Certain car repairs, such as, for example, fixes of the engine control unit or coil springs, the restoration of the air conditioning system or brake plumbing and reservoir replacement, are complex and involve toxic substances. Any such repairs, which are complex and/or include hazardous substances, should generally not be conducted by lay persons and are not suitable for do-it-yourself maintenance. In addition, servicing electric vehicles is different from servicing vehicles with internal combustion engines and requires specialized skills, including high voltage training and servicing techniques. The Sion will be equipped with complex hardware and software and the integrated solar module technology adds additional complexity to potential repair work. Depending on the specific kind of repair, service or maintenance work required for one of our cars, our customers may not be able to engage in such work by themselves, may find the experience offered by our platform unsatisfying or get involved in accidents while attempting to engage in such work without professional assistance and may be required to hire qualified experts at their own expense. Further, we are currently reviewing the future warranty regime of our vehicles and intend to avoid material conflicts between such warranty regime and our self-service platform. However, there is no guarantee that we will ultimately be able to fully reconcile our future warranty regime with our “do-it-yourself” maintenance approach and any repair or act conducted directly by our customers or a third-party service provider on our vehicles could negatively affect the warranty rights of our customers or any other rights they may have. Any such insufficiency of our self-service platform may negatively affect customers’ view of our case, the public image of user-friendliness of our vehicles, impact the number of vehicles sold and subject us to lawsuits.
We may ultimately decide to partner with a third party to perform some or all of the service and maintenance on our vehicles, and there can be no assurance that we will be able to find an external partner or that we will be able to enter into an arrangement with any such third-party provider on terms and conditions
 
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acceptable to us. If we are unable to successfully address the service requirements of our customers, our business, reputation, results of operations, financial condition and prospects will be materially and adversely affected.
Product recalls could materially adversely affect our business, prospects, operating results and financial condition.
Our vehicles are complex products that include innovative and complex hardware and software components whose reliability and durability in the day-to-day wear and tear of our vehicles remains untested. In the future, we may, voluntarily or involuntarily, initiate a recall if any of our vehicles prove to be defective or noncompliant with applicable relevant vehicle safety standards. Relevant defects may include, for example, defective batteries, a lack of durability of our solar modules, intense heat development or thermal expansion of our modules, as well as defective brakes or airbags. Any product recall in the future may result in adverse publicity and damage our brand. Such recalls could involve significant expense and diversion of management attention and other resources and could adversely affect our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations.
Insufficient warranty reserves to cover future warranty claims could materially adversely affect our business, prospects, financial condition and operating results.
We plan to offer a customary warranty for our vehicles. Our vehicles will be equipped with innovative and complex hardware and software, which may make them vulnerable to quality issues and/or warranty claims, particularly as we rely on an outsourced manufacturing approach where we only have limited control over processes. Once the Sion is in production, we will need to maintain warranty reserves to cover warranty-related claims. If our warranty reserves are inadequate to cover future warranty claims, we may become subject to significant and unexpected warranty expenses. There can be no assurances that then-existing warranty reserves will be sufficient to cover all claims.
Our vehicles will make use of lithium-iron phosphate battery cells and solar modules, which both pose certain health and safety risks.
The batteries to be used in the Sion will make use of lithium-iron phosphate chemistry packed in the form of blade cells. On rare occasions, the blade cells can rapidly release stored energy. Any such uncontrolled and unintended outburst of energy may ignite or cause damages to nearby materials as well as other blade cells. Once the Sion is commercially available, any incident involving rapid release of energy from blade cells that causes damage or injury could subject us to lawsuits, product recalls or redesign efforts, all of which would be time consuming and expensive. Also, negative public perceptions regarding the suitability of lithium-iron phosphate cells for automotive applications or any future incident involving lithium-iron phosphate cells, such as a vehicle or other fire, even if such incident does not involve our vehicles, could seriously harm our business and reputation.
Once manufacturing of our vehicles commences, our production partner (NEVS) may have to store a significant number of batteries at its facilities. Even if our production partner has implemented safety procedures related to the handling of the batteries, a safety issue or fire related to the batteries could disrupt operations. Such damage or injury could lead to adverse publicity and potentially a safety recall. Moreover, any failure of a competitor’s electric vehicle or energy storage product may cause indirect adverse publicity for us and our products. Such adverse publicity could negatively affect our brand and harm our business, prospects, financial condition and operating results.
Solar modules may also pose various risks to their environment. Solar modules include components and complex systems that can fail, such as switches, fuses or wiring feeding the solar modules’ power into our vehicles’ systems. In addition, solar panels are made of chemical and potentially toxic materials, such as arsenic and cadmium, in a process that generates many toxic byproducts such as hexafluoride. These products are dangerous for the environment as well as humans. Furthermore, solar modules may catch fire due to, for example, spontaneous combustions, either from the parts within the modules or in the surrounding environment, due to the high levels of heat produced by the device. Solar modules that catch fire may produce heat, smoke and toxic byproducts, may lead to the destruction of the vehicle or may cause bodily harm. In addition, excessive heat may significantly reduce the power output of our solar modules and
 
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negatively affect our vehicles range. Excessive heat may also lead to thermal expansion and deformation of solar modules, which can negatively affect their functionality or damage the exterior of our vehicles.
We will not be able to influence, control or predict the actions of customers and third parties engaging in car-sharing or ride-pooling.
We will not be able to influence, control or predict the actions of customers and third parties using our technologies and innovations. We may be unable to provide a safe environment for drivers, customers or any third party exposed to our car-sharing and ride-pooling offering. Any inappropriate conduct, misconduct or criminal activity (including accidents, vandalism, cases of sexual abuse bodily harm or theft) in connection with our car-sharing and ride-pooling platform or our vehicles may significantly impair our customers’ experience, damage our brand and reputation and may expose us to legal claims. We intend to obtain insurance coverage that addresses various risks relating to our car-sharing and ride-pooling offering but there is no guarantee that we will be able to obtain such insurance coverage in a timely manner, on favorable terms, with the required scope of protection or at all. In addition, there can be no assurance that any coverage we obtain will be sufficient to cover potential claims. We may also decide to discontinue our car-sharing and ride-pooling offering at any given point in time should the offering turn out to be unprofitable, not be accepted by customers or face significant legal challenges. For example, an intense use of our car-sharing and ride-pooling platform may subject us or individuals to laws governing the (public) transport of passengers or similar laws together with the relevant legal implications.
Any unauthorized control or manipulation of our vehicles’ systems could result in loss of confidence in us and our vehicles and harm our business.
Our vehicles will contain complex information technology systems and built-in data connectivity, positioning us to install periodic remote updates to improve or update functionality. We also intend to deploy our own proprietary software and mobile application solution that will provide access to our car-sharing and ride-pooling networks as well as the bidirectional power sharing solution. We have designed, implemented and tested security measures intended to prevent unauthorized access to our information technology networks, our vehicles and related systems. However, hackers may attempt to gain unauthorized access to modify, alter and use such networks, vehicles and systems to gain control of or to change our vehicles’ functionality, user interface and performance characteristics, or to gain access to data stored in, or generated by, our networks, systems or vehicles. Future vulnerabilities could be identified and our efforts to remediate such vulnerabilities may not be successful. Any leakage or loss of data may expose us to liability risks with respect to suppliers or employees as well as customers regarding personal data.
Any unauthorized access to or control of our networks, systems and vehicles or their systems, illegal use of software or any loss of customer or other personal data could result in legal claims or proceedings. In addition, regardless of their veracity, reports of unauthorized access to our vehicles, systems or data, as well as other factors that may result in the perception that our vehicles, systems or data are capable of being “hacked,” could negatively affect our brand and harm our business, prospects, financial condition and operating results.
Interruption or failure of information technology and communications systems could disrupt our business and affect our ability to effectively provide our services.
We utilize information technology systems and networks as well as cloud computing services to process, transmit and store electronic information in connection with our business activities. We manage and maintain our applications and data utilizing a combination of on-site systems as well as externally managed data centers and cloud-based data centers. We utilize third-party security and infrastructure service providers to manage our information technology systems and data centers. These applications and data encompass a wide variety of business-critical information, including research and development information, commercial information, and business and financial information as well as personal data of customers or employees. In addition, we also rely on independent third-party service providers, such as Google, which play an important role for our offering, marketing channels and overall presence. Our data of any kind stored on the cloud services and on individual devices could be lost due to improper handling, insufficient commissioning of third parties to create backup copies, or due to damage or accidental or intentional
 
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deletion by our employees. Our data could also fall into the hands of third parties, whether through espionage, hacking or due to incorrect operation of the systems.
Despite the implementation of security measures by us or our service partners, our or our service partners’ systems as well as any relevant third-party service provider will be vulnerable to damage or interruption from, among others, fire, terrorist attacks, natural disasters, power loss, telecommunications failures, computer viruses, computer denial of service attacks or other attempts to harm our systems. The relevant data centers could also be subject to break-ins, sabotage and intentional acts of vandalism causing potential disruptions. Some of our or our service providers’ systems will not be fully redundant, and our disaster recovery planning cannot account for all eventualities.
Any problems with or insufficiencies of our or our service providers’ data centers or services could result in lengthy interruptions of our or our service providers’ information technology systems and could also affect our vehicles. Cyber threats are persistent and constantly evolving. Such threats have increased in frequency, scope and potential impact in recent years. Information technology evolves rapidly and we or our service providers may not be able to address or anticipate all types of security threats, and may not be able to implement preventive measures effective against all such security threats. The techniques used by cyber criminals change frequently, may not be recognized until launched, and can originate from a wide variety of sources, including outside groups such as external service providers, organized crime affiliates, terrorist organizations, or hostile foreign governments or agencies. There can be no assurance that we or our service providers, contractors or consultants will be successful in preventing cyberattacks or successfully mitigating their effects. Similarly, there can be no assurance that any third-party service provider will be successful in protecting our confidential and other data that is stored on their systems. In addition, we may suffer reputational harm or face litigation or adverse regulatory action as a result of cyberattacks or other data security breaches and may incur significant additional expense to implement further data protection measures. Any disruption of the networks and services of independent third-party service providers could also negatively affect our operations, accessibility or offering.
We may face risks associated with our growth strategy and international operations, including unfavorable regulatory, political, tax and labor conditions, which could harm our business.
Our initial market will be central Europe, with a particular focus on Germany. In the future, we intend to expand our geographic coverage beyond these markets, including the United States and China. Due to our intention to expand our operations internationally, we may face risks associated with our growth strategy, including possible unfavorable regulatory, political, tax and labor conditions, which could harm our business, as well as incurring significant expenditures necessary for road certification in such new markets. Our operations will be subject to the local legal, political, regulatory and social requirements and economic conditions in the relevant jurisdictions. There is no guarantee that we will obtain road certifications for our vehicles in the relevant markets or at all. We have not yet checked the feasibility of a rollout of the Sion or other potential products in all the markets we may tap in the future and may identify political, regulatory, operational or practical hurdles, which may render an expansion into such a market unfeasible.
We have no experience to date selling our vehicles. Any international sales would require us to make significant expenditures, including the potential hiring of local employees and potential establishment of local offices or facilities, in advance of generating any revenues. We are subject to a number of risks associated with international business activities that may increase our costs, impact our ability to sell our electric vehicles and require significant management attention and which we may not have adequately addressed or not addressed at all as of today. These risks include:

conforming our vehicles to various international regulatory requirements where our vehicles are sold, including potential additional road or other certification requirements;

difficulty in staffing and managing foreign operations;

misconceptions and/or false assumptions about foreign local markets;

difficulty in establishing our brand and attracting customers in new jurisdictions;

foreign labor laws, regulations and restrictions as well as strikes or work stoppages organized by labor unions relevant for us, our suppliers or business partners;
 
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foreign government taxes, regulations and permit requirements, including foreign taxes that we may not be able to offset against taxes imposed upon us in Germany or The Netherlands, and foreign tax and other laws limiting our ability to repatriate funds to The Netherlands;

fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates and interest rates, including risks related to any interest rate swap or other hedging activities we undertake;

foreign government trade restrictions, tariffs and price or exchange controls;

changes in diplomatic and trade relationships; and

political instability, natural disasters, war or events of terrorism.
If we fail to successfully address these risks, our business, prospects, operating results and financial condition could be materially harmed.
If we fail to manage our future growth effectively, we may not be able to market and sell our vehicles successfully.
Any failure to manage our future growth effectively could materially and adversely affect our business, prospects, operating results and financial condition. Our internal organization currently follows a “teal” approach that advocates employee autonomy, self-organization and organic adaption to business growth. This organizational approach may prove less efficient or impractical as our business grows and organic adaption of our internal organization to our growing operations may fail. We may have to invest significant additional resources and focus our attention on adapting our internal organization, function and processes which may cause distraction from our operations and negatively affect our business. We may not be able to hire an adequate number of new and qualified employees to support our growth strategy.
If we are unable to attract and retain key employees and hire qualified management, technical and vehicle engineering personnel, our ability to compete could be harmed.
The car industry is rapidly evolving, particularly in the area of e-mobility, and a carmaker’s profitability depends on technological innovation and resources. Our success in such an environment depends, to a large extent, on our management and the ability to retain our key personnel. We are a founder-led business. We depend on the skills and visions of our founders. We benefit from the expertise and knowledge of our research and development team and our competitiveness could be significantly impaired should we be unable to retain the head of our research and development team or any other team member. Any temporary or permanent unavailability or any unexpected loss of one or more of our founders, management members or key employees could adversely affect our business and competitiveness.
Our success also depends, in part, on our continuing ability to identify, hire, attract, train and develop highly qualified personnel. We may have to hire a significant additional number of employees in order to be able to finalize the development of the Sion and start its serial production according to our currently envisioned timelines. We may not succeed in hiring employees in sufficient numbers or at all, as our vehicles are based on a different technology platform than traditional internal combustion engines and individuals with sufficient training in electric vehicles, particularly vehicles using solar technology, are scarce, and as a result, we will need to expend significant time and money to train available employees. Competition for qualified employees is intense, and our ability to hire, attract and retain them depends, among others, on our profitability and ability to provide competitive compensation. We have a limited operating history and our brand and reputation as an employer are not as developed as that of established car manufacturers. We have not yet generated any revenues, significantly depend on external financing and may not be able to offer potential employees attractive or competitive remuneration.
We may therefore not be able to attract, integrate, develop or retain qualified personnel in sufficient quantities or at all. Any failure to do so could adversely affect our business, including the execution of our global business strategy. Unqualified or unreliable personnel may also expose us to various risks not directly related to our operations, such as violations against insider trading laws, the misappropriation of trade and business secrets or personal data from our technology infrastructure, material incorrect entries in our accounting systems, weak management of our customer or supplier relationships or logistics management.
 
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We are exposed to various liability risks resulting from past or existing employment relationships and labor laws.
We employ an increasing number of employees and expect our workforce to grow significantly in the short-term. However, a significant number of employees decided to leave us and we also had to terminate employment relationships with numerous individuals in the past due to various reasons. We are exposed to liability and other risks related to former employees. For example, former employees may assert that the termination of their employment relationship by us was not justified under applicable law and may seek re-employment, monetary compensation or damages. In addition, despite their termination, former employees may still claim to be, fully or partially, entitled to certain benefits granted to them while they were still employed with us, such as, for example, certain incentives, bonuses or pension entitlements.
The management of a growing workforce poses various risks and challenges, particularly in the European Union and Germany, where the vast majority of our workforce is located. The labor laws in Germany are complex and rather employee-friendly. For example, the German Working Time Act (Arbeitszeitgesetz) sets out a strict framework for, amongst others, the length of working shifts and resting breaks, the definition of working days and holidays, work on holidays, compensation and the obligation of employers to record working times of employees. There can be no assurance that we have complied or will comply in all material aspects with applicable labor laws, which may lead to the imposition of material fines or even criminal liability and may significantly negatively affect our reputation.
We face risks related to health epidemics, including the recent COVID-19 pandemic, which could have a material adverse effect on our business and results of operations.
We face various risks related to public health issues, including epidemics or pandemics, such as COVID-19. The impact of COVID-19, including changes in consumer and business behavior, pandemic fears and market downturns, and restrictions on business and individual activities, has created significant volatility in the global economy and led to reduced economic activity. The spread of COVID-19 has also created a disruption in the manufacturing, delivery and overall supply chain of vehicle manufacturers and suppliers, and has led to a global decrease in vehicle sales in markets around the world. Various aspects of our business cannot be conducted remotely and thus may not be carried out during work-from-home periods. The pandemic may also affect the interest of our customers in our innovative car-sharing and ride-pooling networks to which each Sion will be connected. Our car-sharing and ride-pooling solution as currently envisioned may not be compliant in all aspects with relevant or potential legislation related to COVID-19 or any other pandemic, concerning aspects such as minimum distance, the maximum number of persons allowed in a confined space or others. Any cases of infections that could be traced back to the use of one of our shared vehicles, or any other car-sharing services, whether through our fault or not, could adversely affect our reputation, customers’ interest and trust in our sharing services, as well as car-sharing services in general.
The spread of COVID-19 has caused us to modify our business practices (including employee travel, work from home and cancellation or reduction of physical participation in sales activities, meetings, events and conferences), and we may take further actions as may be required by government authorities or that we determine to be in the best interests of our employees, customers, suppliers, manufacturing partners and others business partners. There is no certainty that such actions will be sufficient to mitigate the risks posed by the virus or otherwise be satisfactory to government authorities. If significant portions of our workforce are unable to work effectively, including due to illness, quarantines, social distancing, government actions or other restrictions in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic, our operations will be impacted.
Measures taken to address the spread of COVID-19 may also lead to a trend to work-from-home, which could result in lower demand for cars and could negatively impact our sales and marketing activities. In 2020, COVID-19 had a slightly negative impact on orders and advance payments received from customers. Based on the most current information available, COVID 19 may continue to have a negative effect on orders and advance payments received from customers in 2021.
The extent to which the COVID-19 pandemic impacts our business, prospects and results of operations will depend on future developments, which are highly uncertain and cannot be predicted, including, but not limited to, the duration and spread of the pandemic, its severity, the actions to contain the virus or mitigate
 
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its impact, the effect and penetration of vaccinations, the availability of medication and how quickly and to what extent normal economic and operating activities can resume. The COVID-19 pandemic could limit the ability of our customers, suppliers, third-party manufacturing partners and other business partners to perform, including third-party suppliers’ ability to provide components and materials used in our vehicles. We may also experience an increase in the cost of raw materials used in our commercial production of vehicles. Even after the COVID-19 pandemic has subsided, we may continue to experience an adverse impact to our business as a result of its global economic impact, including any recession that has occurred or may occur in the future.
There are no comparable recent events which may provide guidance as to the effect of the spread of COVID-19 and a pandemic, and, as a result, the ultimate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic or a similar health epidemic is highly uncertain and subject to change. We do not yet know the full extent of COVID-19’s impact on our business, our operations or the global economy as a whole. However, the effects could have a material impact on our results of operations, and we will continue to monitor the situation closely.
Our operations could be adversely affected as a result of disasters or unpredictable events.
Our operations could be disrupted, among others, by natural disasters such as earthquakes, fires or explosions, pandemics and epidemics, power outages, terrorist attacks, cyberattacks or other critical events. This also applies to the operations of our suppliers and other business partners. Some of our production sites may be, should we geographically expand our operations, in regions that could be affected by natural disasters such as flooding or earthquakes. Disruptions may also result from possible regulatory or legislative changes in the relevant jurisdictions of our, our suppliers’ or our business partners’ operations.
Risks Related to Our Financial Position
We will have to raise additional funds until the start of the production of the Sion and potentially beyond, which may not be available to us on acceptable terms or at all when we need them.
According to our current estimates, we currently expect to need funds in the total amount of at least €354 million until the start of the production of the Sion, which we currently envisage to begin in the first half of 2023 (based on soft tooling production to be subsequently replaced by hard tooling), for additional development activities, the initiation of serial production and obtaining of street certification and to finance overhead costs until then. These funds are required for the completion of the development and testing of the Sion, the acquisition of the relevant production and supplier tooling for the Sion (such as test-benches, manufacturing equipment for parts, machinery for body construction and final assembly) and our operational expenditures.
The funding that we expect to obtain from this offering will not be sufficient to secure our needs through the start of production of the Sion. Accordingly, we will need to raise additional capital in significant amounts in the near future. Our funding needs may even increase beyond our current projections should we have to significantly change the design and development of the Sion due to, for example, undiscovered design flaws, lacking certification of, or a need to reengineer, car components, the replacement of one of our suppliers, a higher need for personnel than planned, or regulatory changes regarding, for example, increased safety standards, such as a requirement for a certain driver assistance system. Shifts in the timeline due to a lack of required financing or development taking longer than originally anticipated may also increase our external financing requirements. We would also have to secure additional financing should we decide to grow and expand our product portfolio and operations.
We may find that our efforts related to the growth of our operations are more expensive than we currently anticipate or may not be available at all, and these efforts may not result in revenues, which would further increase our losses and external financing needs. If we are unable to raise required funding, we may not reach commercial operations. Our ability to generate revenue and achieve profitability in the future depends in large part on our ability, alone or with our business partners, to achieve milestones and to successfully complete the development of, obtain the necessary regulatory approvals for, and commercialize, our vehicles and/or solar technologies. We may never succeed in these activities and may never generate revenue from vehicle sales that is significant enough to achieve profitability. Even if we achieve profitability in the future, we may not be able to sustain profitability in subsequent periods.
 
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If we cannot raise additional funds when we need them, our financial condition, results of operations, business and prospects could be materially adversely affected. We may not be able to successfully finalize, market and commercialize the Sion should we not be in a position to secure additional funds. If we do not succeed in raising sufficient additional funds, we will not be able to continue as a going concern. See “—Risks Related to Our Business and Operations—We are an early stage company with a history of significant losses and expect continuing losses for the foreseeable future.
We may not be able to obtain or agree on acceptable terms and conditions for all or a significant portion of the government grants, loans and other incentives for which we may apply, which may negatively affect our ability to reach funding goals.
We may apply for federal and state grants, loans and tax incentives under various government programs designed to stimulate the economy or to support the production of electric vehicles and related technologies. We anticipate that there may be new opportunities for us to apply for grants, loans and other incentives from the German federal or state government(s), the European Union or other governments or quasi-governmental organizations.
Our ability to obtain funds or incentives from these sources is subject to the availability of funds under applicable programs and approval of our applications to participate in such programs. The application process for these funds and other incentives will likely be highly competitive. We cannot assure you that we will be successful in obtaining any of these grants, loans and other incentives. If we are not successful in obtaining any of these additional incentives and unable to find alternative sources of funding to meet our planned capital needs, our business and prospects could be materially adversely affected.
The unavailability, reduction or elimination of government and economic incentives or imposition of any additional taxes or surcharges could have a material adverse effect on the development of the e-mobility market, our business, prospects, financial condition and operating results.
Many governments have established e-mobility funding programs, government subsidies, tax benefits and other economic purchase incentives in relation to the acquisition of electric vehicles. Any reduction, elimination or discriminatory application of government funding programs or subsidies and other economic incentives or imposition of any additional taxes and surcharges may negatively impact the competitiveness of the electric vehicle industry generally or the Sion in particular.
We do not expect to pay any dividends in the foreseeable future.
We currently intend to retain our future earnings, if any, for the foreseeable future, to fund the completion of development of the Sion and start of its serial production, as well as the growth of our business. We currently do not intend to pay any dividends to holders of our common shares. As a result, capital appreciation in the price of our common shares, if any, will be your only source of gain on an investment in our common shares. See “Dividend Policy.
Regulatory, Legal and Tax Risks
We are subject to substantial regulation and unfavorable changes to, or failure by us to comply with, these regulations could substantially harm our business and operating results.
Electric vehicles as well as certain of our innovative solutions are subject to substantial regulation under international, national, regional, and local laws. We expect to incur significant costs in complying with these regulations. In addition, additional regulatory costs or hurdles may materialize in the future as we expand our operations, as we have not yet assessed all relevant legal aspects of our operations and current business model with respect to the relevant legal framework of all jurisdictions we may conduct business in. For example, our car-sharing and ride-pooling solution as currently envisioned may not be feasible in all relevant jurisdictions and may conflict with local laws on the transport of passengers. For example, customers who offer ride-pooling on a regular basis in return for payment may require a governmental license for the transport of persons in certain jurisdictions. Furthermore, our power sharing solutions to be included in our vehicles, which may allow for transfer of power from a vehicle in return for a payment, may have to comply with calibration laws in certain jurisdictions and any violations could have significant implications for any individual making use of such a solution or us.
 
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Furthermore, regulations related to the electric vehicle industry and alternative energy are evolving and we face risks associated with changes to these regulations, including, but not limited to, increased sensitivity by regulators to the needs of established automobile manufacturers with large employment bases, high fixed costs and business models based on the internal combustion engine, which could lead them to pass regulations that could reduce the compliance costs of such established manufacturers or mitigate the effects of government efforts to promote electric vehicles. Regulators may specifically support selected established automobile manufacturers in their transition from internal combustion engine technologies to alternative technologies, which may distort competition in the e-mobility market.
To the extent laws change, our vehicles may not comply with applicable international, national, regional or local laws, which would have an adverse effect on our business. Compliance with changing regulations could be burdensome, time consuming and expensive. To the extent compliance with new regulations is cost prohibitive, our business, prospects, financial condition and operating results would be adversely affected.
We may face regulatory and other challenges attempting to sell our vehicles directly to customers
Our business plan includes the direct sale of the Sion to our customers via pre-orders that can be placed on our website in order to provide a cost-efficient marketing approach and save dealer margins. Certain jurisdictions, which may become relevant for our operations in the future, require a license to sell vehicles within that jurisdiction, prohibit carmakers from directly selling vehicles to customers or require a physical dealership within that jurisdiction to deliver vehicles to customers.
As a result, we may not be able to sell and deliver our vehicles in each relevant jurisdiction where we, currently or in the future, plan to market our vehicles, which would adversely affect our business, prospects, financial condition and operating results. In addition, the online-based marketing and sale of our vehicles to our customers may trigger local taxing obligations for our customers or us, depending on the jurisdiction from which a car is ordered, which we may not have yet considered and may make our option less attractive to customers in key markets or impose additional financial burdens.
Furthermore, our distribution model is not common in the automotive industry today and is relatively new and unproven, therefore subjecting us to substantial risk as it requires, in the aggregate, significant expenditures and provides for slower expansion of our distribution and sales systems than may be possible by utilizing the traditional dealer franchise system. For example, we will not be able to utilize long established sales channels developed through a franchise system to increase our sales volume. Moreover, we will be competing with car manufacturers with well established distribution channels. Our success will depend in large part on our ability to effectively develop our own sales channels and marketing strategies.
We are subject to various environmental laws and regulations that could impose substantial costs upon us.
Our operations, are or will be subject to international, national, regional and/or local environmental laws and regulations, including, in the jurisdictions in which we intend to sell our products, laws relating to the use, handling, storage, disposal and human exposure to hazardous materials (including the German Federal Soil Protection Act (Bundes-Bodenschutzgesetz), the US Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, Regulation (EC) no. 1907/2006 (REACH), or CERCLA). Environmental and health and safety laws and regulations can be complex, and we expect that we will be affected by future amendments to such laws or other new environmental and health and safety laws and regulations, which may require us to change our operations, potentially resulting in a material adverse effect on our business, prospects, financial condition and operating results.
These laws can give rise to liability for administrative oversight costs, cleanup costs, property damage, bodily injury, fines and penalties. Capital and operating expenses needed to comply with environmental laws and regulations can be significant, and violations may result in substantial fines and penalties, third-party damages, suspension of production or a cessation of our operations.
We may be involved in legal proceedings based on the alleged violation of intellectual property rights, such as patent or trademark infringement claims, which may be time-consuming and cause us to incur substantial costs.
Technological innovation will be a crucial aspect of success on the electric vehicle market. We have been granted three patents for our technologies and intend to continue to file additional patent applications
 
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in the future. As the number of competitors in the electric vehicle market increases, and as the number of patents issued in this area grows, the possibility of patent infringement claims against us increases. While we are not aware that our technologies infringe the proprietary rights of any third party, we do not regularly conduct freedom to operate searches. We may also in-license patents and other intellectual property from third parties, including suppliers and service providers, and we may face claims that our use of this in-licensed technology infringes the intellectual property rights of others. In such cases, we will seek indemnification from our licensors. However, our rights to indemnification may be unavailable or insufficient to cover our costs and losses.
We may be required to participate in interference, derivation or opposition proceedings that concern disputes regarding priority of inventions disclosed in our patents. Determining patent infringement by a product, as well as priority of inventions and other patent-related disputes, involves complex legal and factual issues and the outcome is often uncertain. We have not conducted any significant search of patents issued to third parties, and third-party patents containing claims covering our technology or methods that predate our patents may exist. Because of the number of patents issued and patent applications filed in our technical areas or fields (including some pertaining specifically to electric vehicles), our competitors or other third-parties may assert that our technology and the methods we employ in the use of products incorporating our technology are covered by patents held by them. In addition, because patent applications can take many years to issue and because publication schedules for pending applications vary by jurisdiction, we may not be aware of certain patent applications that are currently pending, which applications may result in issued patents that our technology or other future products would infringe. Also, because the claims of published patent applications can change between publication and patent grant, there may be published patent applications that may ultimately issue with claims that we infringe.
The Sion will make use of complex hardware and software solutions and we may not have the resources to sufficiently assess potential infringements of third-party patents or other intellectual property rights. Our ability to successfully commercialize the Sion may be significantly impaired should any of its components violate third parties’ intellectual property rights, particularly with respect to our key technologies, such as our solar technology. The scope of patent claims is subject to construction based on interpretation of the law, the written disclosure in a patent and the patent’s prosecution history. Our interpretation of the relevance or the scope of a patent or a pending application may be incorrect. Established car manufacturers or other market players may invest significant resources and capital to protect their intellectual property and scan the market for potential violations. There is a heightened risk that inquiries or legal proceedings based on the alleged violation of intellectual property rights are initiated by established car manufacturers that develop and test technologies similar to ours and that have much more resources and funds than us. Other companies owning patents or other intellectual property rights relating to technologies relevant for us, such as battery packs, solar modules, power sharing solutions or electronic power management systems may also allege infringement of such rights. In addition, we may also be exposed to claims from individuals who were or are engaged in the design and development of our vehicles or technologies. The publicity created in connection with this offering and thereafter will draw additional attention to us and likely generally increase the risks of such claims and legal proceedings, no matter whether such claims lack the required merits or not or are of merely fraudulent nature.
In response to a determination that we have infringed upon a third party’s intellectual property rights, we may be required to do one or more of the following:

cease or delay development, production, sales or use of the Sion or any other of our vehicles that incorporate the asserted intellectual property in general or in certain jurisdictions;

pay substantial damages, settlements or ongoing royalties;

obtain a license from the owner of the asserted intellectual property right, which license may not be available on reasonable terms or at all;

enter into cross-licenses with our competitors; or

redesign one or more aspects or systems of our vehicles, which may require us to invest substantial resources in the redesign process.
 
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In addition, we may be required to indemnify our customers and distributors against claims relating to the infringement of intellectual property rights of third parties related to our products. Third parties may assert infringement claims against our customers or distributors. These claims may require us to initiate or defend protracted and costly litigation on behalf of our customers or distributors, regardless of the merits of these claims. If any of these claims succeed, we may be forced to pay damages on behalf of our customers or distributors, or may be required to obtain licenses for the products or services they use. If we cannot obtain all necessary licenses on commercially reasonable terms, our distributors may be forced to stop distributing our products or services, and our customers may be forced to stop using our products or services.
The outcome of intellectual property litigation is subject to uncertainties that cannot be adequately quantified in advance. Because of the substantial amount of discovery required in certain jurisdictions in connection with intellectual property litigation, there is a risk that some of our confidential information could be compromised by disclosure during this type of litigation. If we are required to obtain a license from any third party in order to use the infringing technology and continue developing, manufacturing or marketing our vehicles, we may not be able to obtain such required license on commercially reasonable terms or at all, including due to competitors being unwilling to provide us a license under any terms. A successful claim of infringement of intellectual property against us could therefore materially adversely affect our business, prospects, operating results and financial condition. Any litigation or claims, whether valid or invalid, could result in substantial costs and diversion of resources and we have not yet build any reserves for litigation related to intellectual property.
If our trademarks and trade names are not adequately protected, we may not be able to build name recognition in our markets of interest, which may adversely affect our business.
Our trademark registrations and applications are valuable assets and may be challenged, infringed, circumvented or declared generic or determined to infringe a third party’s trademarks. We may not be able to protect our rights to these trademark registrations or applications, which may be necessary to build name recognition among potential collaborators or customers in our markets of interest. At times, competitors may adopt trademarks or trade names similar to ours, thereby impeding our ability to build brand identity and possibly leading to market confusion. In addition, there could be potential trademark infringement claims brought by owners of other trademarks or trademarks that incorporate variations of our trademark registrations or applications. We have not conducted any availability searches for trademarks to assess whether our trademark registrations would not infringe a third party’s trademarks, or whether our trademark applications would be successfully registered. We can provide no assurance that our pending trademark applications will be approved. Successful third-party challenges to the use of any of our trademarks may require us to rebrand our business or certain products or services associated therewith.
Over the long term, if we are unable to establish name recognition based on our trademarks, then we may not be able to compete effectively and our business may be adversely affected. We may fail to adequately maintain the quality of our products and services associated with our trademarks, and any loss to the distinctiveness of our trademarks may cause us to lose certain trademark protection, which could result in the loss of goodwill and brand recognition in relation to our name and products. In addition, we may license our trademarks to third parties, such as distributors. Though these license agreements may provide guidelines for how our trademarks may be used, a breach of these agreements or misuse of our trademarks by these licensees may jeopardize our rights in or diminish the goodwill associated with our trademarks. Our efforts in enforcing or protecting our trademarks may be ineffective and could result in substantial costs and diversion of resources and adversely affect our business.
We may be subject to claims that our employees have wrongfully used or disclosed alleged trade secrets of their former employers or claims asserting ownership of what we regard as our own intellectual property.
Some of our employees were previously employed at other companies that may have proprietary rights related to our business. Some of these employees may have executed proprietary rights, non-disclosure and noncompetition agreements in connection with such previous employment. Although we try to ensure that such individuals do not use the proprietary information or know-how of others in their work for us, we may be subject to claims that we or these employees have used or disclosed intellectual property, including trade secrets or other proprietary information, of their former employers. We are not aware of any such disclosures, or threatened or pending claims related to these matters, but in the future, litigation may be
 
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necessary to defend against such claims. If we fail to defend any such claims, we may lose valuable intellectual property rights or personnel, and may be required to pay monetary damages and be enjoined from conducting our business as contemplated. Even if we are successful in defending against such claims, litigation can be expensive and time-consuming.
Intellectual property rights do not necessarily address all potential threats to our competitive advantage.
The degree of future protection afforded by our intellectual property rights is uncertain because intellectual property rights have limitations, and may not adequately protect our business or permit us to maintain our competitive advantage.
For example:

others may be able to make products or processes that are identical or similar to any product or process we may develop and commercialize or utilize similar intellectual property or technologies that we now or may in the future own or have in-licensed;

we or our future licensors or collaborators might not have been the first to make the inventions covered by the patents or pending patent applications that we own or have in-licensed;

we or our future licensors or collaborators might not have been the first to file patent applications covering certain of our or their inventions;

others may independently develop similar or alternative intellectual property or technologies or duplicate any of our intellectual property or technologies without infringing our owned or in-licensed intellectual property rights;

it is possible that our pending patent applications or those that we may own or in-license in the future will not lead to issuance of patents;

patents that we own or have in-licensed may be held invalid or unenforceable, including as a result of legal challenges by our or our licensors’ competitors;

our competitors might conduct research and development activities in countries where we do not have patent rights and then use the information learned from such activities to develop competitive products or processes for sale in our major commercial markets;

we may not develop additional trade secrets or proprietary know-how that is patentable;

the patents of others may have an adverse effect on our business; and

we may choose not to file a patent in order to maintain certain trade secrets or proprietary know-how, and a third party may subsequently file a patent covering such trade secrets or proprietary know-how.
Should any of these events occur, they could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and reputation.
We intend to retain certain personal data about our customers and may be subject to various privacy laws.
The Sion will, and our other future car models may, be equipped with complex information technology. The Sion will be connected to car-sharing and ride-pooling networks and our customers may access their car and define the terms of shared use via our own application. We intend to use our vehicles’ technology systems to log information about each vehicle’s use (including the vehicle location, usage patterns of car-sharing and ride-pooling options, data on defects and repairs) in order to aid us in vehicle diagnostics, repair and maintenance. We may also use such data for marketing purposes and to induce customers to ensure proper vehicle maintenance or promote car-sharing or ride-pooling. Our customers may object to the use of this data, which may increase our vehicle maintenance costs and harm our business prospects.
Our customers’ information in conducting our business may subject us to legislative and regulatory burdens and requirements in the European Economic Area (“EEA”) and the United States of America that could require notification of data breaches, restrict our use of such information and hinder our ability to acquire new customers or market to existing customers. We have not yet implemented a comprehensive set
 
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of internal- or external-facing written data protection and privacy policies, procedures and rules. Non-compliance or a major breach of our network security and systems could have serious negative consequences for our business and future prospects, including possible fines, penalties and damages, reduced customer demand for our vehicles, and harm to our reputation and brand. For instance, Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of the European Parliament and of the Council of April 27, 2016 on the protection of natural persons with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data (the General Data Protection Regulation, “GDPR”) imposes strict limitations on the processing of personal data. The GDPR and other data privacy laws regulate when and how personal data may be collected, for which purposes it may be processed, for how long such data may be stored and to whom and how it may be transferred. The GDPR contains strict requirements for obtaining the consent of data subjects (i.e., the persons to whom personal data relates) to the use and processing of their personal data and also requires the implementation of appropriate technical and organizational measures, depending on the nature of the processing activities, and imposes certain documentation obligations relating to data processing activities. The GDPR also imposes various obligations in the context of processing of data, including, among others, far-reaching transparency, data minimization, storage limitations, privacy by design and privacy by default obligations, data security, integrity and confidentiality obligations. In addition, it may require data protection impact assessments where the data processing is likely to result in a high risk to the rights and freedoms of individuals. In case of a violation of the provisions of the GDPR, we could be subject to fines of up to €20,000,000 or up to 4% of our total worldwide annual turnover of the preceding financial year, whichever is higher, and other administrative penalties. We may also be liable should any individual who has suffered financial or non-financial damage arising from our infringement of the GDPR exercise their right to receive compensation against us. Furthermore, adverse publicity relating to our failure to comply with the GDPR could cause a loss of goodwill, which could have an adverse effect on our reputation, brand, business and financial condition. In addition, local authorities may construe new regulations in a way that is even more restrictive and there is no guarantee that we will be able to comply with such restrictive approaches.
There is a risk that personal data that we process could become public if there were a security breach in respect of such data and, if such security breach were to occur, we could face liability under data protection laws, including the GDPR, and lose the goodwill of our customers, which may have a material adverse effect on our reputation, brand, business and financial condition.
We are exposed to the risk of litigation or other legal proceedings that could cause us to spend substantial resources and disrupt our business.
We are exposed to the risk of product liability claims, regulatory action and litigation if any defect of our vehicles is alleged to have caused loss or injury. Product liability claims could arise, for example, from malfunctions, defects, quality issues relating to, or abuse of, any of our technologies implemented in or offered with our vehicles, or defects, quality issues or malfunctions related to any components used in our vehicles, such as batteries, airbags or brakes. Any product liability claims or corresponding regulatory actions against us could result in increased costs and could adversely affect our reputation and our perception by our customers.
We may also face litigation and legal proceedings based on advertisements or other public statements should such statements turn out to be unrealistic, unfeasible or false or should the overall advertised performance or specifications of our vehicles deviate from such advertisements or public statements. For example, we publicly communicated that our vehicles will have a battery range of approximately 305 kilometers, or up to 190 miles and a weekly solar based range of up to 245 kilometers, or up to 152 miles. However, these specifications indicate our current expectations and development targets with respect to the battery- and solar-based range of our vehicles until the series production of our vehicles and there is no guarantee that our vehicles will ultimately achieve these specifications, which depend on the success of the development efforts of our battery supplier and/or us.
In addition, in connection with a crowdfunding campaign launched in December 2019, our three founders Laurin Hahn, Navina Persteiner and Jona Christians announced that they would contribute their profit participation rights associated with their shares in Sono Motors GmbH (while the voting rights associated with the underlying shares would remain with the founders), equaling 64.07% of all profit participation rights at that time, into a “community pool” from which certain monetary benefits in the form
 
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of so-called Sono Points would then be awarded. The founders intended such monetary benefits in the form of Sono Points to be allocated among already existing customers and new customers who placed a reservation for a vehicle, depending, with respect to new customers, on the timing of the reservation and the amount of the advance payment of the relevant new customer. The Sono Points would represent participating entitlements concerning dividends, liquidation proceeds and proceeds from the sales of shares attributable to the community pool. However, a legal assessment later revealed substantial legal obstacles in the concept as envisioned by our founders and that it was not feasible from a tax perspective. Our founders, together with their external advisors, have in the meantime developed an alternative structure for the granting of Sono Points to our customers as originally envisioned with respect to the shares in Sono Group N.V. pursuant to which our three founders will each contribute their relevant shares in Sono Group N.V. into limited partnerships controlled by a founder and governed by German law (Kommanditgesellschaften) and will enter into contractual sub-arrangements with the relevant Sono Point beneficiaries regarding their monetary participation entitlements. However, this alternative structure remains subject to further assessment and final approval, including by, among others, German tax authorities. There is no guarantee that this structure will be ultimately feasible or that our founders may be able to offer a feasible structure for the granting of Sono Points at all. In addition, the current alternative structure for the granting of Sono Points focuses on tax issues under German law and may not adequately cover any other relevant issues in connection with the communication during the crowdfunding campaign regarding Sono Points. In particular, our founders may not be able to address issues and financial or any other burdens with respect to Sono Points of any customers who were or are not located in Germany. In addition, not all aspects of the scheme originally envisioned by our founders for granting the Sono Points may be fully and adequately reflected in the alternatively developed structure and/or the alternatively developed structure may incorporate new structural elements or otherwise substantially deviate to the disadvantage of customers from what our founders originally contemplated and publicly communicated. For example, under the alternative structure, Sono Points will be forfeited, if a customer terminates his/her reservation and the relevant Sono Points will fall back to the founders and not lead to a proportionate increase of Sono Points (or participations in the community pool) of the remaining customers. Further, the shares underlying the Sono Points and contributed into the community pool may generally be transferred by the founders under certain conditions, which may negatively affect the actual value of participation entitlements associated with Sono Points. In addition, the alternative structure allows the allocation of additional Sono Points to new customers, which would result in the dilution of the participation entitlements of existing customers. Therefore, not all customers who were previously promised Sono Points may ultimately receive Sono Points at the terms and conditions originally communicated or at all. Disappointed customers who may not receive Sono Points at the terms and conditions originally promised or at all and/or other members of our community may initiate lawsuits against our founders or us and may trigger waves of negative publicity should we not be able to offer, in full or in part, a feasible structure for the granting of Sono Points in all relevant jurisdictions. Further, we cannot preclude that Sono Group N.V. or Sono Motors GmbH will be held liable with respect to any possible significant obligations or claims under the Sono Points scheme.
We may or will be, as the case may be, subject to anti-corruption, anti-bribery, anti-money laundering, financial and economic sanctions and similar laws and our compliance systems may not be sufficient to adequately prevent or detect legal, financial and operational risks.
Our business may or will be subject to various laws and regulations relating to, among other things, prevention of illegal employment, bribery and corruption, and money laundering, as well as compliance with antitrust, data protection (particularly the EU General Data Protection Regulation), consumer protection, minimum wage regulations, various criminal as well as export control regulations and trade and economic sanctions and embargoes on certain countries, persons, groups and/or entities, projects and/or activities. We are reliant on the compliance of our employees and the members of our management board, our contractors, consultants, agents, vendors and (other) collaboration partners with applicable laws and compliance policies implemented by us.
However it cannot be excluded that our employees, the members of the management board, our contractors, consultants, agents, vendors and (other) collaboration partners have committed or will commit criminal, unlawful or unethical acts (including corruption) or that our compliance and risk management and its monitoring capabilities may prove insufficient to prevent or detect any breaches of the law. Any such acts or breaches of law could result in whistle-blower complaints, adverse media coverage, (criminal)
 
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investigations, significant civil, administrative, and criminal penalties and damage claims, disgorgement or other sanctions, (collateral) consequences, remedial measures and legal expenses, and cause considerable damage to our reputation, thereby negatively affecting our business, results of operations, financial condition and future business opportunities.
We may become subject to additional Dutch and German taxes, in particular, due to the statutory seat of Sono Group N.V. in the Netherlands.
There is a risk that the German tax authorities classify Sono Group N.V. as Dutch tax resident. If the German tax authorities conclude that Sono Group N.V. is not, has ceased, or ceases to be (also as a consequence of the change of facts or the law), a German tax resident, it could, inter alia, become subject to German exit taxation. This could have serious German tax consequences, including German exit taxes or the increase of German withholding taxes on dividends received by the Company. Such German exit taxes could lead to the taxation of the built-in gains in the assets (e.g., intellectual property or goodwill) of Sono Group N.V.
If we do pay dividends, we may need to withhold tax on such dividends payable to holders of our shares in both Germany and The Netherlands.
We currently do not intend to pay any dividends to holders of our common shares. However, if we do pay dividends, we may need to withhold tax on such dividends in both Germany and The Netherlands.
As an entity incorporated under Dutch law, any dividends distributed by us are subject to Dutch dividend withholding tax based on Dutch domestic law. However, on the basis of the 2012 Convention between the Federal Republic of Germany and the Kingdom of The Netherlands for the avoidance of double taxation with respect to taxes on income, or the “double tax treaty between Germany and The Netherlands,” The Netherlands will be restricted in imposing these taxes if we are also a tax resident of Germany and our effective management is located in Germany. This withholding tax restriction does, however, not apply, and Dutch dividend withholding tax is still required to be withheld from dividends, if and when paid to Dutch resident holders of our common shares and non-Dutch resident holders of our common shares that have a permanent establishment in The Netherlands to which their shareholding is attributable. As a result, upon a payment of dividends, we will be required to identify our shareholders in order to assess whether there are Dutch residents (or non-Dutch residents with a permanent establishment in The Netherlands to which the common shares are attributable) in respect of which Dutch dividend tax has to be withheld. Such identification may not always be possible in practice. If the identity of our shareholders cannot be determined, withholding of both German and Dutch dividend tax may occur upon a payment of dividends.
Furthermore, the withholding tax restriction referred to above is based on the current reservation made by Germany under the Multilateral Convention to Implement Tax Treaty Related Measures to Prevent Base Erosion and Profit Shifting, or the MLI, with respect to the tie-breaker provision included in Article 4(3) of the double tax treaty between Germany and The Netherlands, or the MLI tie-breaker reservation. If Germany changes its MLI tie-breaker reservation, we will not be entitled to any benefits of the double tax treaty between Germany and The Netherlands, including the withholding tax restriction, as long as Germany and The Netherlands do not reach an agreement on our tax residency for purposes of the double tax treaty between Germany and The Netherlands, and, as a result, any dividends distributed by us during the period no such agreement has been reached between Germany and The Netherlands may be subject to withholding tax both in Germany and The Netherlands.
Dividends distributed on our common shares to certain related parties in low-taxed jurisdictions might in the future become subject to an additional Dutch withholding tax on dividends.
Under current law, dividends paid to holders of our common shares could become subject to Dutch dividend withholding tax at a rate of 15% under the Dutch Dividend Withholding Tax Act (Wet op de dividendbelasting 1965), unless a domestic or treaty exemption or reduction applies. On March 25, 2021, a legislative proposal has been published to introduce an additional withholding tax on dividends in the Netherlands as of January 1, 2024. Based on the legislative proposal, dividends distributed by us to related entities (statutorily defined term) tax resident in jurisdictions that have a corporate income tax rate below 9% (low-taxing states) or jurisdictions that are included on the European Union's blacklist of non-cooperative
 
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jurisdictions (non-cooperative jurisdictions for tax purposes) will also become subject to a conditional withholding tax at a rate equal to the highest Dutch corporate income tax rate (currently 25%) at the time of the dividend. The conditional withholding tax on dividends may also apply in situations where artificial structures are put in place with the main purpose or one of the main purposes to avoid the conditional withholding tax or in the event of a hybrid mismatch. The conditional withholding tax on dividends will be reduced, but not below zero, by any Dutch dividend withholding tax withheld in respect of the same dividend payment. As a result, if the shareholder is (A) a related entity and (B)(i) is established or has a permanent establishment a low-taxing state or non-cooperative jurisdiction for tax purposes (ii) is a hybrid entity or a reverse hybrid entity or (iii) is interposed to avoid tax otherwise due by another entity, the tax rate on dividends may rise from 15% to the highest corporate tax rate (currently 25%) as of 2024. The legislative proposal has been approved by the House of Representatives (TweedeKarner) ofthe Dutch Parliament on September 30, 2021, and is pending for approval bythe Senate (Eerslë Kamer) of the Dutch Parliament before it can enter into force.
We may become a passive foreign investment company (“PFIC”), which could result in adverse United States federal income tax consequences to United States investors.
Based on the projected composition of our income and valuation of our assets, including goodwill, we do not expect to be a PFIC for our current taxable year or in the future, although there can be no assurance in this regard. The determination of whether or not we are a PFIC is made on an annual basis and will depend on the composition of our income and assets from time to time. Specifically, we will be classified as a PFIC for United States federal income tax purposes if either: (1) 75% or more of our gross income in a taxable year is passive income, or (2) the average percentage of our assets by value in a taxable year which produce or are held for the production of passive income (which includes cash) is at least 50%.
Although we do not expect to become a PFIC, our PFIC status is a factual determination that is made annually and thus may be subject to change. It is therefore possible that we could become a PFIC in a future taxable year. In addition, our current position that we are not a PFIC is based in part upon the value of our goodwill which is based on the market value of our shares. Accordingly, we could become a PFIC in the future if there is a substantial decline in the value of our shares.
If we are or were to become a PFIC, such characterization could result in adverse United States federal income tax consequences and burdensome reporting requirements to a holder of common shares if such holder is a United States investor.
Risks Related to Our Initial Public Offering and Our Common Shares
There has been no public market for our common shares prior to this offering, and there is no guarantee that an active and liquid market for our common shares will develop.
Prior to this initial public offering, there was no public market for our common shares, and we cannot assure you that one will develop or be sustained after this offering. If a market does not develop or is not sustained, it may be difficult for any investor to sell his or her common shares held in the Company. Public trading markets may also experience volatility and disruption. This may affect the pricing of our common shares in the secondary market, the transparency and availability of trading prices, the liquidity of our common shares and the extent of regulation applicable to us. We cannot predict the prices at which our common shares will trade. The initial public offering price for our common shares will be determined through our negotiations with the underwriters and may not bear any relationship to the market price at which our common shares will trade after this offering or to any other established criteria of the value of our business.
In the course of past financing rounds we received investments based on valuations of our business by individual investors at the relevant times. Such individual valuations were not confirmed by independent experts and reflect the personal valuation criteria of the relevant investors as well as the specific circumstances under which these investments were made. Consequently, these valuations may have exceeded the valuations at which other parties would have been willing to invest in us. Potential investors should therefore not place undue reliance on past valuations.
In addition, it is possible that, in future quarters, our operating results may be below the expectations of securities analysts and investors. As a result of these and other factors, the price of our common shares may decline.
 
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Sales of substantial amounts of our common shares in the public market, or the perception that these sales may occur, could cause the market price of our common shares to decline.
Sales of substantial amounts of our common shares in the public market, or the perception that these sales may occur, could cause the market price of our common shares to decline. This could also impair our ability to raise additional capital through the sale of our equity securities. Under our articles of association, we will be authorized to issue up to 320,000,000 common shares. Upon an increase of our issued share capital to at least €25,000,000, our authorized share capital will automatically increase to €102,000,000, divided into 1,500,000,000 common shares and 8,000,000 high voting shares, of which                 common shares and         high voting shares will be outstanding following this offering. An issuance of new common shares may also lead to substantial dilution of our then existing shareholders. We intend to agree with Berenberg Capital Markets LLC, subject to certain exceptions, not to, directly or indirectly, offer, sell, assign, transfer, pledge contract to sell, or otherwise dispose of any shares of our share capital or securities convertible into or exchangeable or exercisable for any shares of our share capital without the prior written consent of Berenberg Capital Markets LLC during the 180-day period following the date of this prospectus. Our management board members, substantially all of our existing shareholders and holders of certain mandatory convertible senior notes previously issued by are expected to agree to substantially similar lock-up provisions, subject to certain exceptions. The lock-up period under the agreements to be entered into with the holders of our mandatory convertible senior notes and with the holders of our common equity raised from December 2020 to June 2021 will cover the 90-day period following the date of this prospectus. Following the expiration of the lock-up period, our existing shareholders may determine to sell their common shares, subject to certain restrictions. See “Description of Share Capital and Articles of Association” and “Common Shares Eligible for Future Sale” in this prospectus. We cannot predict the size of future issuances of our shares or the effect, if any, that future sales and issuances of shares would have on the market price of our common shares.
The market price of our common shares could fluctuate significantly, which could result in substantial losses for purchasers of our common shares in this offering.
The stock market in general and the market for smaller technology companies in particular have experienced extreme volatility that has often been unrelated to the operating performance of particular companies. As a result of this volatility, you may not be able to sell your common shares at or above the public offering price and you may lose some or all of your investment. Following this offering, the market price of our common shares will be affected by the supply and demand for our common shares, which may be influenced by numerous factors, many of which are beyond our control, including:

fluctuation in actual or projected results of operations;

changes in projected earnings or failure to meet securities analysts’ earnings expectations;

the absence of analyst coverage;

negative analyst recommendations;

changes in trading volumes in our common shares (including by the sale of shares granted to our employees under employee participation programs);

large-volume or targeted transactions by short-sellers;

changes in our shareholder structure;

changes in macroeconomic conditions;

the activities of competitors and sellers;

changes in the market valuations of comparable companies;

our ability to successfully finalize development of, market and commercialize the Sion as well as future car models;

the recruitment or departure of key management or scientific personnel or other key employees;

significant lawsuits, including patent, shareholder or customer litigation;
 
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changes in investor and analyst perception with respect to our business or the car industry in general; and

changes in the statutory framework applicable to our business.
As a result, our share price may be subject to substantial fluctuation.
In addition, general market conditions and fluctuation of share prices and trading volumes could lead to pressure on the market price of our common shares, even if there may not be a reason for this based on our business performance or earnings outlook. Furthermore, investors in the secondary market may view our business more critically than investors in this offering, which could adversely affect the market price of our common shares in the secondary market. In addition, prices for companies with a limited operating history, particularly in industries with barriers such as the car industry, may be more volatile compared to share prices for established companies or companies from other industries.
If the market price of our common shares declines as a result of the realization of any of these risks, investors could lose part or all of their investment in our common shares.
Additionally, in the past, when the market price of a stock has been volatile, holders of that stock have sometimes instituted securities class action litigation against the company that issued the shares. If any of our shareholders brought a lawsuit against us, we could incur substantial costs defending the lawsuit. Such a lawsuit could also divert the time and attention of our management from our business, which could significantly harm our profitability and reputation.
Our dual-class share structure with different voting rights will limit your ability as a holder of common shares to influence corporate matters and could discourage others from pursuing any change of control transactions that holders of common shares may view as beneficial.
We have a dual-class share structure, which we intend to maintain for the foreseeable future, as our share capital consists of common shares and high voting shares. In respect of matters requiring the votes of shareholders, holders of common shares will be entitled to one vote per share, while holders of high voting shares will be entitled to 25 votes per share. Each high voting share is convertible into one common share at any time by the holder thereof, while common shares are not convertible into high voting shares under any circumstances.
The high voting shares are held by Laurin Hahn and Jona Christians, two of our founders and management board members. Following this offering, Laurin Hahn will hold approximately    % and Jona Christians will hold approximately    % of our total voting rights (if the underwriters exercise their option to purchase additional common shares from us in full). This concentration of ownership may discourage, delay or prevent a change in control of our Company, which could deprive our other shareholders of an opportunity to receive a premium for their common shares as part of a sale of our Company and might ultimately affect the market price of our common shares. This concentrated control will limit your ability to influence corporate matters that holders of common shares may view as beneficial. In addition, certain index providers, such as S&P Dow Jones or FTSE Russell, view multi-class shares critically and have amended their rules so that companies with multi-class shares will no longer be added to their indexes.
We will incur increased costs as a result of operating as a public company, and our management will be required to devote substantial time to new compliance initiatives and corporate governance practices.
As a public company, and particularly once we cease qualifying as an emerging growth company or if we were to lose our status as an emerging growth company in the future, we will incur significant legal, accounting and other expenses that we did not incur as a private company, including, but not limited to, costs and expenses for management board members’ and supervisory board members’ fees, increased directors and officers insurance, investor relations, and various other costs of a public company. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act, the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the listing requirements of Nasdaq and other applicable securities rules and regulations impose various requirements on public companies, including establishment and maintenance of effective disclosure and financial controls and corporate governance practices. Our management and other personnel will need to devote a substantial amount of time to these compliance initiatives. Moreover, these rules and regulations will increase our legal
 
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and financial compliance costs and will make some activities more time-consuming and costly. For example, we expect that these rules and regulations may make it more difficult and more expensive for us to obtain director and officer liability insurance.
We are evaluating these rules and regulations, and cannot predict or estimate the amount of additional costs we may incur or the timing of such costs. These rules and regulations are often subject to varying interpretations, in many cases due to their lack of specificity, and, as a result, their application in practice may evolve over time as new guidance is provided by regulatory and governing bodies. This could result in continuing uncertainty regarding compliance matters and higher costs necessitated by ongoing revisions to disclosure and governance practices.
We are not currently required to comply with the rules of the SEC implementing Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, or Section 404, and therefore are not required to make a formal assessment of the effectiveness of our internal control over financial reporting for that purpose. Upon becoming a publicly traded company, we will be required to comply with the SEC’s rules implementing Sections 302, 906 and 404(a) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, which will require management to certify financial and other information in our annual reports and attest to the effectiveness of control over financial reporting. Though we will be required to disclose material changes in internal control over financial reporting on an annual basis, we will not be required to make our annual assessment of our internal control over financial reporting pursuant to Section 404(a) until the year of our second annual report required to be filed with the SEC.
To achieve compliance with Section 404 within the prescribed period, we will be engaged in documenting and evaluating our internal control over financial reporting, which is both costly and challenging. In this regard, we will need to continue to dedicate internal resources, potentially engage outside consultants and adopt a detailed work plan to assess and document the adequacy of internal control over financial reporting, continue steps to improve control processes as appropriate, validate through testing that controls are functioning as documented and implement a continuous reporting and improvement process for internal control over financial reporting. We currently have limited accounting personnel and we have begun the process of evaluating the adequacy of our accounting personnel staffing level and other matters related to our internal control over financial reporting. Despite our efforts, the overall control environment is still immature and may expose us to errors, losses or fraud. Hence, there is a risk that we will not be able to conclude, within the prescribed timeframe or at all, that our internal control over financial reporting is effective as required by Section 404(a).
Additionally, while we remain an emerging growth company, we will not be required to include an attestation report on internal control over financial reporting issued by our independent registered public accounting firm pursuant to Section 404(b). Furthermore, after the date we are no longer an emerging growth company, our independent registered public accounting firm will only be required to attest to the effectiveness of our internal controls over financial reporting depending on our market capitalization. An independent assessment of the effectiveness of our internal controls could detect problems that our management’s assessment might not.
The consequences of being a public company could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
We have identified material weaknesses in our internal control over financial reporting. If we are unable to remediate the material weaknesses, or if other control deficiencies are identified, we may not be able to report our financial results accurately, prevent fraud or file our periodic reports as a public company in a timely manner.
Prior to this offering, we have been operating as a private company that was not required to comply with the obligations of a public company with respect to internal controls over financial reporting.
In connection with the audits of our consolidated financial statements for the years ended December 31, 2019 and 2020, we identified multiple material weaknesses in our internal control over financial reporting. A “material weakness” is a deficiency, or a combination of deficiencies, in internal control over financial reporting such that there is a reasonable possibility that a material misstatement of our annual or condensed consolidated interim financial statements will not be prevented or detected on a timely basis. The material
 
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weaknesses that were identified primarily related to (i) a lack of consistent and proper application of accounting processes and procedures; (ii) the design and operating effectiveness of information technology general controls for information systems that are significant to the preparation of our consolidated financial statements; (iii) a lack of review and supervision; (iv) the sufficiency of resources with an appropriate level of technical accounting and SEC reporting experience; (v) clearly defined control processes, roles and segregation of duties within our finance and accounting functions.
As a result of the material weaknesses, made journal entries without proper underlying documentation and failed to identify adjustments in various areas, including, but not limited to, capitalization of intangible assets; did not maintain accurate customer and creditor data, did not remit correct VAT declarations, made disbursements for which the Company did not retain sufficient supporting documentation, including underlying invoices; did not have sufficient knowledge of IFRS, including understanding of new accounting standards, in order for the preparation of consolidated financial statements in accordance with IFRS and consideration of the impact of changes on our internal control over financial reporting; did not have an effective risk assessment process to identify and assess the financial reporting risks caused by changes in the operating environment, business operations, personnel or IT systems and to make necessary changes to our financial reporting processes and related internal controls to manage those risks; did not design control activities that are responsive to the identified fraud risks, including the risk of bias and management override of controls; and did not have a proper process in place to sufficiently and timely identify and assess new events and transactions in order to consider necessary adjustments to our system of internal control over financial reporting. We have relied on the assistance of external service providers with expertise in these matters to assist us in the preparation of our consolidated financial statements and in our compliance with SEC reporting obligations related to this offering and expect to continue to do so while we remediate these material weaknesses. We have initiated a remediation plan to address these material weaknesses; however, our control environment still needs to be improved, and as a result, we may be exposed to errors. As part of this plan, we intend to hire additional senior-level and staff accountants to implement robust processes and provide us with additional technical expertise. In the interim, we will continue to engage third parties as required to assist with technical accounting and tax matters. Additionally, we intend to develop and implement robust accounting policies, internal control procedures and provide additional training to our accounting and finance staff. While we are working to remediate the weaknesses as quickly and efficiently as possible, we cannot at this time provide an estimate of the timeframe we expect in connection with implementing our plan to remediate this material weaknesses. These remediation measures may be time-consuming and costly, and might place significant demands on our financial and operational resources.
In addition, neither our management nor any outside advisor has performed an evaluation of our internal control over financial reporting in accordance with the provision of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act because no such evaluation has been required. Had we or an outside advisor performed an evaluation of our internal control over financial reporting in accordance with the provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, additional material weaknesses may have been identified. Once public, we will be subject to reporting obligations under U.S. securities laws and the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act will require that we include a report from management on the effectiveness of our internal control over financial reporting in our annual report on Form 20-F beginning with our annual report for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2022. If we fail to remediate the material weaknesses identified above, our management may conclude that our internal control over financial reporting is not effective. This conclusion could adversely impact the market price of our shares due to a loss of investor confidence in the reliability of our reporting processes.
Our failure to correct the existing material weaknesses or our failure to discover and address any other control deficiencies could result in inaccuracies in our consolidated financial statements and could also impair our ability to comply with applicable financial reporting requirements and make related regulatory filings on a timely basis. As a result, our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects, as well as the trading price and listing of our shares, may be materially and adversely affected. We cannot assure you that all of our existing material weaknesses have been identified, or that we will not in the future identify additional material weaknesses.
 
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If we fail to establish and maintain proper and effective internal control over financial reporting, our operating results and our ability to operate our business could be harmed.
Ensuring that we have adequate internal financial and accounting controls and procedures in place so that we can produce accurate consolidated financial statements on a timely basis is a costly and time-consuming effort that needs to be re-evaluated frequently. Our internal control over financial reporting is a process designed to provide reasonable assurance regarding the reliability of financial reporting and the preparation of consolidated financial statements in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. In connection with this offering, we intend to begin the process of documenting, reviewing and improving our internal controls and procedures for compliance with Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, which will require annual management assessment of the effectiveness of our internal control over financial reporting. Our independent registered public accounting firm will not be required to formally attest to the effectiveness of our internal control over financial reporting until the later of our second annual report or the first annual report required to be filed with the SEC following the date we are no longer an emerging growth company, depending on whether we choose to rely on certain exemptions set forth in the JOBS Act.
Implementing any appropriate changes to our internal controls, including compliance with the requirements of Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, may distract our officers and employees, entail substantial costs to modify our existing processes and take significant time to complete. These changes may not, however, be effective in maintaining the adequacy of our internal controls, and any failure to maintain that adequacy, or consequent inability to produce accurate consolidated financial statements on a timely basis, could increase our operating costs and harm our business. In addition, investors’ perceptions that our internal controls are inadequate or that we are unable to produce accurate consolidated financial statements on a timely basis may harm our stock price, make it more difficult for us to effectively market and sell our service to new and existing customers and subject us to sanctions or investigations by Nasdaq, the SEC or other regulatory authorities. In addition, our common stock may not be able to remain listed on Nasdaq or any other securities exchange.
Future offerings of debt or equity securities by us could adversely affect the market price of our common shares, and future issuances of equity securities could lead to a substantial dilution of our shareholders.
We will require additional capital in the future to finance our business operations and growth. For example, we will require additional funding to reach commercial operation, and we may seek to offer new equity in the future for such funding. The Company may seek to raise such capital through the issuance of additional equity or debt securities with conversion rights (e.g., convertible bonds and option rights). An issuance of additional equity or debt securities with conversion rights could potentially reduce the market price of our common shares and the Company currently cannot predict the amounts and terms of such future offerings.
If such offerings of equity or debt securities with conversion rights are made without granting preemptive rights to our existing shareholders, these offerings would dilute the economic and voting rights of our existing shareholders. Preemptive rights may be restricted or excluded by a resolution of the general meeting or by another corporate body designated by the general meeting. Our management board has been authorized until November 27, 2025 to issue shares or grant rights to subscribe for shares up to our authorized share capital from time to time and to limit or exclude preemptive rights in connection therewith. This could cause existing shareholders to experience substantial dilution of their interest in us.
In addition, such dilution may arise from the acquisition or investments in companies in exchange, fully or in part, for newly issued common shares, the exercise of convertible rights under securities that the Company issued before this offering, convertible rights in connection with financing arrangements the Company entered into before this offering, stock options or conversion rights granted to our business partners or our customers as well as from the exercise of stock options or conversion rights granted to our employees in the context of existing or future stock option programs or the issuance of common shares to employees in the context of existing or future employee participation programs.
Any future issuance of common shares could reduce the market price of our common shares and dilute the holdings of existing shareholders.
 
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Future sales by major shareholders could materially adversely affect the market price of our common shares.
For various reasons, shareholders may sell all or some of our common shares, including in order to diversify their investments. Sales of a substantial number of our common shares in the public market following the successful completion of the offering, or the perception that such sales might occur, could depress the market price of our common shares and could impair our ability to raise capital through the sale of additional equity securities.
We have broad discretion in the use of the net proceeds from this offering and may not use them effectively.
Our management will have considerable discretion in the application of the net proceeds from this offering and could spend the proceeds in ways that do not improve our results of operations or enhance the value of our common shares. Shareholders may not be able to assess whether the proceeds are being used appropriately. The failure by our management to apply these funds effectively could result in financial losses that could adversely affect our business and cause the price of our common shares to decline. See “Use of Proceeds” in this prospectus.
An investment in our common shares by an investor whose principal currency is not the Euro may be affected by exchange rate fluctuation.
Our common shares are, and any dividends to be paid in respect of them will be, denominated in euros. An investment in our common shares by an investor whose principal currency is not the euro will expose such an investor to exchange rate risks. Any depreciation of the euro in relation to the principal currency of the respective investor will reduce the value of the investment in our common shares or any dividends in relation to such currency.
If securities or industry analysts do not publish research or publish inaccurate or unfavorable research about our business, the market price for our common shares and trading volume could decline.
The trading market for our common shares will depend in part on the research and reports that securities or industry analysts publish about us or our business. If securities or industry analyst coverage results in downgrades of our common shares or publishes inaccurate or unfavorable research about our business, our share price would likely decline. If one or more of these analysts cease coverage of us or fail to publish reports on us regularly, we could lose visibility in the financial markets and demand for our common shares could decrease, which, in turn, could cause the market price or trading volume for our common shares to decline significantly.
Investors may have difficulty enforcing civil liabilities against us or the members of our management and supervisory board.
We are organized and existing under the laws of The Netherlands, and, as such, under Dutch private international law rules the rights of our shareholders and the civil liability of our management board members, supervisory board members and executive officers are governed in certain respects by the laws of The Netherlands. The ability of our shareholders in certain countries other than The Netherlands to bring an action against us, our management board members, supervisory board members and executive officers may be limited under applicable law. In addition, substantially all of our assets are located outside the United States.
As a result, it may not be possible for shareholders to effect service of process within the United States upon us or our management board members, supervisory board members and executive officers or to enforce judgments against us or them in U.S. courts, including judgments predicated upon the civil liability provisions of the federal securities laws of the United States. In addition, it is not clear whether a Dutch court would impose civil liability on us or any of our management board members, supervisory board members and executive officers in an original action based solely upon the federal securities laws of the United States brought in a court of competent jurisdiction in The Netherlands.
As of the date of this prospectus, the United States and The Netherlands do not have a treaty providing for the reciprocal recognition and enforcement of judgments, other than arbitration awards, in civil and
 
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commercial matters. With respect to choice of court agreements in civil or commercial matters, it is noted that the Hague Convention on Choice of Court Agreements entered into force for The Netherlands, but has not entered into force for the United States. Accordingly, a judgment rendered by a court in the United States, whether or not predicated solely upon U.S. securities laws, would not automatically be recognized and enforced by the competent Dutch courts. However, if a person has obtained a judgment rendered by a court in the United States that is enforceable under the laws of the United States and files a claim with the competent Dutch court, the Dutch court will in principle give binding effect to a foreign judgment if (i) the jurisdiction of the foreign court was based on a ground of jurisdiction that is generally acceptable according to international standards, (ii) the judgment by the foreign court was rendered in legal proceedings that comply with the Dutch standards of proper administration of justice including sufficient safeguards (behoorlijke rechtspleging), (iii) binding effect of such foreign judgment is not contrary to Dutch public order (openbare orde) and (iv) the judgment by the foreign court is not incompatible with a decision rendered between the same parties by a Dutch court, or with a previous decision rendered between the same parties by a foreign court in a dispute that concerns the same subject and is based on the same cause, provided that the previous decision qualifies for recognition in The Netherlands. Even if such a foreign judgement is given binding effect, a claim based thereon may, however, still be rejected if the foreign judgment is not or no longer formally enforceable.
Based on the lack of a treaty as described above, U.S. investors may not be able to enforce against us or our management board members, supervisory board members, representatives or certain experts named herein who are residents of The Netherlands or countries other than the United States any judgments obtained in U.S. courts in civil and commercial matters, including judgments under the U.S. federal securities laws.
The United States and Germany currently do not have a treaty providing for the reciprocal recognition and enforcement of judgments, in civil and commercial matters. Consequently, a final judgment for payment or declaratory judgments given by a court in the United States, whether or not predicated solely upon U.S. securities laws, would not automatically be recognized or enforceable in Germany. German courts may deny the recognition and enforcement of a judgment rendered by a U.S. court if they consider the U.S. court not to be competent or the decision to be in violation of German public policy principles. For example, judgments awarding punitive damages are generally not enforceable in Germany. A German court may reduce the amount of damages granted by a U.S. court and recognize damages only to the extent that they are necessary to compensate actual losses or damages.
In addition, actions brought in a German court against us, our management board members, our supervisory board members, our senior management and the experts named herein to enforce liabilities based on U.S. federal securities laws may be subject to certain restrictions. In particular, German courts generally do not award punitive damages. Litigation in Germany is also subject to rules of procedure that differ from the U.S. rules, including with respect to the taking and admissibility of evidence, the conduct of the proceedings and the allocation of costs. German procedural law does not provide for pre-trial discovery of documents, nor does Germany support pre-trial discovery of documents under the 1970 Hague Evidence Convention. Proceedings in Germany would have to be conducted in the German language and all documents submitted to the court would, in principle, have to be translated into German. For these reasons, it may be difficult for a U.S. investor to bring an original action in a German court predicated upon the civil liability provisions of the U.S. federal securities laws against us, our management board members, our supervisory board members, our senior management and the experts named in this prospectus.
Based on the foregoing, there can be no assurance that U.S. investors will be able to enforce against us or management board members, supervisory board members, executive officers or certain experts named herein who are residents of or possessing assets in The Netherlands, Germany and or other countries other than the United States any judgments obtained in U.S. courts in civil and commercial matters, including judgments under the U.S. federal securities laws.
We are a Dutch public company. The rights of our shareholders may be different from the rights of shareholders in companies governed by the laws of U.S. jurisdictions and may not protect investors in a similar fashion afforded by incorporation in a U.S. jurisdiction.
We are a public company (naamloze vennootschap) organized under the laws of The Netherlands. Our corporate affairs are governed by our articles of association, the rules of our management board and those
 
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of our supervisory board and by the laws governing companies incorporated in The Netherlands. However, there can be no assurance that Dutch law will not change in the future or that it will serve to protect investors in a similar fashion afforded under corporate law principles in the United States, which could adversely affect the rights of investors.
The rights of shareholders and the responsibilities of management board members and supervisory board members may be different from the rights and obligations of shareholders and directors in companies governed by the laws of U.S. jurisdictions. In the performance of their duties, our management board members and supervisory board members are required by Dutch law to consider the interests of our Company, its shareholders, its employees and other stakeholders, in all cases with due observance of the principles of reasonableness and fairness. It is possible that some of these parties will have interests that are different from, or in addition to, your interests as a shareholder.
Our articles of association stipulate that the planet, humankind and society are important stakeholders of us and the highest principle pursued by us as part of our objects is the protection of the environment, nature and humankind. Under our articles of association, this principle shall form the foundation of our actions and the decisions of our management board and the supervisory board. On the basis of that premise, among other matters, our management board and the supervisory board may let the interests of the planet, humankind and society outweigh the interests of other stakeholders, provided that the interests of the latter stakeholders are not unnecessarily or disproportionately harmed. A resolution to amend the text or purport of these provisions of our articles of association shall require a unanimous vote in a general meeting where the entire issued share capital is represented.
For more information on relevant provisions of Dutch corporation law and of our articles of association, see “Description of Share Capital and Articles of Association” and “Comparison of Dutch Corporate Law and U.S. Corporate Law.
Our articles of association contain exclusive forum provisions for certain claims, which could limit our shareholders’ ability to obtain a favorable judicial forum for disputes with us or the members of our management or supervisory board.
Our articles of association provide that unless we consent in writing to the selection of another forum, the federal district courts of the United States of America will, to the fullest extent permitted by law, be the exclusive forum for resolving any complaint asserting a cause of action arising under the Securities Act or the Exchange Act (the “Federal Forum Provision”). Moreover, Section 22 of the Securities Act creates concurrent jurisdiction for federal and state courts over all claims brought to enforce any duty or liability created by the Securities Act or the rules and regulations thereunder. Our decision to adopt the Federal Forum Provision followed a decision by the Supreme Court of the State of Delaware holding that such provisions are facially valid under Delaware law. While there can be no assurance that federal or state courts will follow the holding of the Delaware Supreme Court or determine that the Federal Forum Provision should be enforced in a particular case, application of the Federal Forum Provision means that suits brought by our shareholders to enforce any duty or liability created by the Securities Act must be brought in federal court and cannot be brought in state court.
Section 27 of the Exchange Act creates exclusive federal jurisdiction over all claims brought to enforce any duty or liability created by the Exchange Act or the rules and regulations thereunder and our articles of association confirm that the federal district courts of the United States of America will be the exclusive forum for resolving any complaint asserting a cause of action arising under the Exchange Act. Accordingly, actions by our shareholders to enforce any duty or liability created by the Exchange Act or the rules and regulations thereunder must be brought in federal court.
We may argue that any person or entity purchasing or otherwise acquiring or holding any interest in any of our securities will have, or will be deemed to have, notice of and consented to our exclusive forum provisions, including the Federal Forum Provision. Additionally, our shareholders cannot waive compliance with the federal securities laws and the rules and regulations thereunder. These provisions may limit our shareholders’ ability to bring a claim in a judicial forum they find favorable for disputes with us or the members of our management or supervisory board, or employees and agents, which may discourage lawsuits against us and the members of our management or supervisory board or employees and agents.
 
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Alternatively, if a court were to find the choice of forum provision contained in our articles of association to be inapplicable or unenforceable in an action, we may incur additional costs associated with resolving such action in other jurisdictions, which may have an adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.
Provisions of our articles of association or Dutch corporate law might deter acquisition bids for us that might be considered favorable and prevent, delay or frustrate any attempt to replace or remove our management board members or supervisory board members
Under Dutch law, various protective measures are possible and permissible within the boundaries set by Dutch law and Dutch case law. In this respect, certain provisions of our articles of association may make it more difficult for a third party to acquire control of us or effect a change in our management board and supervisory board. These include:

a dual-class share structure which consists of common shares and high voting shares, with common shares carrying one vote per share and high voting shares carrying 25 votes per share;

a provision that each of our two founders, Laurin Hahn and Jona Christians, as long as the relevant founder holds at least 5% of our voting rights, can make a binding nomination for the appointment of one supervisory board member, which can only be overruled by a two-thirds majority of votes cast representing more than 50% of our issued share capital;

a provision that our management board members and the supervisory board members, not appointed on the basis of a binding nomination by one of our founders as described above, are appointed on the basis of a binding nomination prepared by our supervisory board which can only be overruled by a two-thirds majority of votes cast representing more than half of our issued share capital;

a provision that our management board members and the supervisory board members may only be dismissed by the general meeting by a two-thirds majority of votes cast representing more than half of our issued share capital (unless the dismissal is proposed by the supervisory board in which case a simple majority of the votes cast would be sufficient);

a provision allowing, among other matters, the former chairperson of our supervisory board to manage our affairs if all of our supervisory board members are removed from office and to appoint others to be charged with the supervision of our affairs, until new supervisory board members are appointed by the general meeting on the basis of the binding nominations discussed above; and

a requirement that certain matters, including an amendment of our articles of association, may only be brought to our general meeting for a vote upon a proposal by our management board with the approval of our supervisory board.
In addition, Dutch law allows for staggered multi-year terms of our management board members and supervisory board members, as a result of which only part of our management board members and supervisory board members may be subject to appointment or re-appointment in any one year.
Furthermore, in accordance with the Dutch Corporate Governance Code (the “DCGC”), shareholders who have the right to put an item on the agenda for our general meeting or to request the convening of a general meeting shall not exercise such rights until after they have consulted our management board. If exercising such rights may result in a change in our strategy (for example, through the dismissal of one or more of our managing directors or supervisory directors), our management board must be given the opportunity to invoke a reasonable period of up to 180 days to respond to the shareholders’ intentions. If invoked, our management board must use such response period for further deliberation and constructive consultation, in any event with the shareholder(s) concerned and exploring alternatives. At the end of the response time, our management board, supervised by our supervisory board, shall report on this consultation and the exploration of alternatives to our general meeting. The response period may be invoked only once for any given general meeting and shall not apply (i) in respect of a matter for which a response period has been previously invoked or (ii) if a shareholder holds at least 75% of our issued share capital as a consequence of a successful public bid.
Moreover, our management board, with the approval of our supervisory board, can invoke a cooling-off period of up to 250 days when shareholders, using their right to have items added to the agenda for a
 
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general meeting or their right to request a general meeting, propose an agenda item for our general meeting to dismiss, suspend or appoint one or more managing directors or supervisory directors (or to amend any provision in our articles of association dealing with those matters) or when a public offer for our company is made or announced without our support, provided, in each case, that our management board believes that such proposal or offer materially conflicts with the interests of our company and its business. During a cooling-off period, our general meeting cannot dismiss, suspend or appoint managing directors and supervisory directors (or amend the provisions in our articles of association dealing with those matters) except at the proposal of our management board. During a cooling-off period, our management board must gather all relevant information necessary for a careful decision-making process and at least consult with shareholders representing 3% or more of our issued share capital at the time the cooling-off period was invoked, as well as with our Dutch works council (if we or, under certain circumstances, any of our subsidiaries would have one). Formal statements expressed by these stakeholders during such consultations must be published on our website to the extent these stakeholders have approved that publication. Ultimately one week following the last day of the cooling-off period, our management board must publish a report in respect of its policy and conduct of affairs during the cooling-off period on our website. This report must remain available for inspection by shareholders and others with meeting rights under Dutch law at our office and must be tabled for discussion at the next general meeting. Shareholders representing at least 3% of our issued share capital may request the Enterprise Chamber of the Amsterdam Court of Appeal, or the Enterprise Chamber (Ondernemingskamer), for early termination of the cooling-off period. The Enterprise Chamber must rule in favor of the request if the shareholders can demonstrate that:

our management board, in light of the circumstances at hand when the cooling-off period was invoked, could not reasonably have concluded that the relevant proposal or hostile offer constituted a material conflict with the interests of our company and its business;

our management board cannot reasonably believe that a continuation of the cooling-off period would contribute to careful policy-making; or

other defensive measures, having the same purpose, nature and scope as the cooling-off period, have been activated during the cooling-off period and have not since been terminated or suspended within a reasonable period at the relevant shareholders’ request (i.e., no ‘stacking’ of defensive measures).
We are not obligated to, and do not, comply with all best practice provisions of the Dutch Corporate Governance Code.
Upon the closing of this offering, we will be subject to the DCGC. The DCGC contains both principles and best practice provisions on corporate governance that regulate relations between the management board, the supervisory board and the general meeting and matters in respect of financial reporting, auditors, disclosure, compliance and enforcement standards. The DCGC is based on a “comply or explain” principle. Accordingly, companies are required to disclose in their annual reports, filed in The Netherlands, whether they comply with the provisions of the DCGC. If they do not comply with those provisions (for example, because of a conflicting Nasdaq requirement), the company is required to give the reasons for such noncompliance. The DCGC applies to Dutch companies listed on a government-recognized stock exchange, whether in The Netherlands or elsewhere, including Nasdaq. We do not comply with all best practice provisions of the DCGC. See “Description of Share Capital and Articles of Association.” This may affect your rights as a shareholder and you may not have the same level of protection as a shareholder in a Dutch company that fully complies with the DCGC.
We are eligible to be treated as an emerging growth company, as defined in the Securities Act, and we cannot be certain whether the reduced disclosure requirements applicable to emerging growth companies will make our common shares less attractive to investors, given that we may rely on these exemptions.
We are eligible to be treated as an “emerging growth company,” as defined in Section 2(a) of the Securities Act, as modified by the JOBS Act, and we may take advantage of certain exemptions from various reporting requirements that are applicable to other public companies that are not “emerging growth companies” including presenting only limited selected financial data in the registration statement on Form F-1 of which this prospectus is a part and not being required to comply with the auditor attestation requirements of
 
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Section 404(b) in subsequent Annual Reports filed on Form 20-F. As a result, our shareholders may not have access to certain information that they may deem important. We could be an emerging growth company for up to five years, although circumstances could cause us to lose that status earlier, including if our total annual gross revenue exceeds $1.07 billion, if we issue more than $1.00 billion in non-convertible debt securities during any three-year period, or if we are a large accelerated filer and the market value of our common shares held by non-affiliates exceeds $700 million as of the end of any second quarter before that time.
As a foreign private issuer, we will not be subject to U.S. proxy rules and will be subject to Exchange Act reporting obligations that, to some extent, are more lenient and less frequent than those of a U.S. domestic public company.
Upon completion of this offering, we will report under the Exchange Act as a non-U.S. company with foreign private issuer status. Because we qualify as a foreign private issuer under the Exchange Act and although we are subject to Dutch laws and regulations with regard to such matters, we are exempt from certain provisions of the Exchange Act that are applicable to U.S. domestic public companies, including (1) the sections of the Exchange Act regulating the solicitation of proxies, consents or authorizations in respect of a security registered under the Exchange Act, (2) the sections of the Exchange Act requiring insiders to file public reports of their share ownership and trading activities and liability for insiders who profit from trades made in a short period of time and (3) the rules under the Exchange Act requiring the filing with the SEC of quarterly reports on Form 10-Q containing unaudited financial and other specified information. In addition, foreign private issuers are required to file their annual report on Form 20-F within four months after the end of each fiscal year, while U.S. domestic issuers that are accelerated filers are required to file their annual report on Form 10-K within 75 days after the end of each fiscal year and U.S. domestic issuers that are large accelerated filers are required to file their annual report on Form 10-K within 60 days after the end of each fiscal year. Foreign private issuers are also exempt from Regulation FD, which is intended to prevent issuers from making selective disclosures of material information. As a result of all of the above, holders of our common shares may not have the same protections afforded to shareholders of a company that is not a foreign private issuer.
We may lose our foreign private issuer status in the future, which could result in significant additional costs and expenses.
As discussed above, we are a foreign private issuer, and therefore, we are not required to comply with all of the periodic disclosure and current reporting requirements of the Exchange Act. The determination of foreign private issuer status is made annually on the last business day of an issuer’s most recently completed second fiscal quarter, and, accordingly, the next determination will be made with respect to us on June 30, 2022.
In the future, we would lose our foreign private issuer status if, among others, (1) more than 50% of our outstanding voting securities, which we intend to determine based on the voting power of our common shares and high voting shares on a combined basis are directly or indirectly held of record by U.S. residents and (2) a majority of our directors or executive officers are U.S. citizens or residents, more than 50% of our assets are located in the United States or our business is administered principally in the United States. If we lose our foreign private issuer status, we will be required to file with the SEC periodic reports and registration statements on U.S. domestic issuer forms including consolidated financial statements prepared under US GAAP, and which are more detailed and extensive than the forms available to a foreign private issuer. We will also have to mandatorily comply with U.S. federal proxy requirements, and our officers, directors and principal shareholders will become subject to the short-swing profit disclosure and recovery provisions of Section 16 of the Exchange Act. In addition, we will lose our ability to rely upon exemptions from certain corporate governance requirements under the listing rules of Nasdaq. As a U.S. listed public company that is not a foreign private issuer, we would incur significant additional legal, accounting and other expenses that we would not incur as a foreign private issuer. These expenses would relate to, among other things, the obligation to present our financial information in accordance with U.S. GAAP in the future. Additionally, a loss of our foreign private issuer status would divert our management’s attention from other business concerns, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
 
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As a foreign private issuer and as permitted by the listing requirements of Nasdaq, we follow certain home country governance practices rather than the corporate governance requirements of Nasdaq.
We are a foreign private issuer. As a result, in accordance with the listing requirements of Nasdaq we will rely on home country governance requirements and certain exemptions thereunder rather than relying on the corporate governance requirements of Nasdaq. In accordance with Dutch law and generally accepted business practices, our articles of association currently do not provide quorum requirements generally applicable to general meetings. To this extent, our practice varies from the requirement of Nasdaq Listing Rule 5620(c), which requires an issuer to provide in its bylaws for a generally applicable quorum, and that such quorum may not be less than one-third of the outstanding voting shares. Although we must provide shareholders with an agenda and other relevant documents for the general meeting, Dutch law does not have a regulatory regime for the solicitation of proxies and the solicitation of proxies is not a generally accepted business practice in the Netherlands, thus our practice will vary from the requirement of Nasdaq Listing Rule 5620(b). As permitted by the listing requirements of Nasdaq, we have also opted out of the requirements of Nasdaq Listing Rule 5605(d), which requires, among other things, an issuer to have a compensation committee that consists entirely of independent directors, Nasdaq Listing Rule 5605(e), which requires independent director oversight of director nominations, and Nasdaq Listing Rule 5605(b)(1), which requires an issuer to have a majority of independent directors on its board. We will also rely on the phase-in rules of the SEC and Nasdaq with respect to the independence of our audit committee. These rules require that a majority of our supervisory board members must be independent and all members of our audit committee must meet the independence standard for audit committee members within one year of the effectiveness of the registration statement of which this prospectus forms a part. In addition, we have opted out of shareholder approval requirements, as included in the Nasdaq Listing Rules, for the issuance of securities in connection with certain events such as the acquisition of shares or assets of another company, the establishment of or amendments to equity-based compensation plans for employees, a change of control of our Company and certain private placements. To this extent, our practice varies from the requirements of Nasdaq Rule 5635, which generally requires an issuer to obtain shareholder approval for the issuance of securities in connection with such events. For an overview of our corporate governance principles, see “Description of Share Capital and Articles of Association.” Accordingly, you may not have the same protections afforded to shareholders of companies that are subject to these stock exchange requirements.
 
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CAUTIONARY STATEMENT REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
The prospectus contains forward-looking statements that relate to our current expectations and views of future events. These statements relate to events that involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, including those listed under “Risk Factors,” which may cause our actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements.
In some cases, these forward-looking statements can be identified by words or phrases such as “believe,” “may,” “will,” “expect,” “estimate,” “could,” “should,” “anticipate,” “aim,” “estimate,” “intend,” “plan,” “believe,” “potential,” “continue,” “is/are likely to” or other similar or comparable expressions. These forward-looking statements include all matters that are not historical facts. Forward-looking statements contained in this prospectus include, but are not limited to, statements about:

our future business and financial performance, including our revenue, operating expenses and our ability to achieve profitability and maintain our future business and operating results;

our strategies, plan, objectives and goals, including, for example, the planned completion of the development of the Sion and the beginning of its serial production as well as intended expansion of our product portfolio or geographic reach;

the number of reservations for the Sion and revenue potential;

the expected start of serial production of the Sion and the key steps to start production including indicative milestones and funding requirements;

our planned monetization of our technological innovations;

our plan to generate revenue from emission certificate pooling under relevant EU regulations on CO2 credits (CO2 pooling);

our use of the net proceeds from the sale of shares by us in this offering; and

our expectations regarding the development of our industry, market size and the competitive environment in which we operate.
These forward-looking statements are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and assumptions, many of which are beyond our control. In addition, these forward-looking statements reflect our current views with respect to future events and are not a guarantee of future performance. We caution you that forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and that our actual results of operations, financial condition and liquidity, and the development of the industries in which we operate may differ materially from those made in or suggested by the forward-looking statements contained in this prospectus. In addition, even if our results of operations, financial condition and liquidity, and the development of the industries in which we operate are consistent with the forward-looking statements contained in this prospectus, those results or developments may not be indicative of results or developments in subsequent periods. Actual outcomes may differ materially from the information contained in the forward-looking statements as a result of a number of factors, including, without limitation, the risk factors set forth in “Risk Factors,” which include the following:

our history of significant losses and expect continuing losses for the foreseeable future, which lead to continued reliance on external financing and raise substantial doubt about our ability to continue as a going concern;

the dependence of our success and future growth upon the market’s willingness to adopt solar electric vehicles;

developments in vehicle technology that may adversely affect the demand for solar electric vehicles;

the competitiveness of the automotive market and the risk to fail to be among the first to serve the mass market with an electric vehicle with solar power capability;

high volatility of demand in the automobile industry;
 
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our unproven ability to develop vehicles and the risk to fail to finalize development and realize the commercialization of the Sion within the intended timeframe, budget or at all;

the initial dependence on a single car model, the Sion;

that our customers may cancel their reservations for the Sion without penalty;

our intention to deploy technologies and solutions in our vehicles, including our solar module technology, which may not be fully functional or available on our anticipated schedule or at all, and may remain unproven and pose additional risks;

our dependence on the adequate protection of our intellectual property;

that our patent applications may not lead to the granting of patents or desired protection in time or at all, which may have a material adverse effect on our ability to prevent others from commercially exploiting products similar to ours;

obstacles we may face in tapping additional revenue opportunities;

a delay in the commercial production of the Sion;

our possible inability to develop manufacturing processes and capabilities within our projected costs and timelines;

our unproven and still-evolving ability to manufacture vehicles of sufficient quality and appeal to customers on schedule and at scale and to commercialize our vehicles;

our dependence on National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS) for production of the Sion;

our dependence on the development, production, performance and durability of batteries being engineered by a single supplier;

our intention to outsource logistics management of our operations to third-party logistics (3PL) and potentially fourth-party logistics (4PL) services providers;

ongoing negotiations of contractual agreements with many of our prospective suppliers and business partners and potential renegotiations of these agreements as we scale our business;

the involvement of numerous third parties in our process, which adds significant complexity;

our dependence on the acceptance of our brand and any negative publicity relating to any of our business partners and their products or services, which could have a significant negative impact on our business and reputation;

the risk that the Sion or any of our future vehicles may fail to perform as expected;

our significant use of various communication channels for our public relations activities, including our website and social media;

damage to our reputation due to the perception that our advertisements were overly positive or that we do not live up to our promises;

noncompliance of our advertisements with all relevant legal requirements in the past or in the future;

product recalls that could materially adversely affect our business, prospects, operating results and financial condition;

any unauthorized control or manipulation of our vehicles’ systems;

risks associated with our growth strategy and international operations, including unfavorable regulatory, political, tax and labor conditions, which could harm our business;

our failure to manage our future growth effectively;

our inability to attract and retain key employees and hire qualified management, technical and vehicle engineering personnel, which could harm our ability to compete;

risks related to health epidemics, including the recent COVID-19 pandemic; and
 
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the need to raise additional funds until the start of the production of the Sion and potentially beyond, which may not be available to us on acceptable terms or at all when we need them.
The forward-looking statements made in this prospectus relate only to events or information as of the date on which the statements are made in this prospectus. Except as required by law, we undertake no obligation to update or revise publicly any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, after the date on which the statements are made or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events. You should read this prospectus, including the uncertainties and factors discussed under “Risk Factors” completely and the documents that we have filed as exhibits to the registration statement, of which this prospectus is a part, completely and with the understanding that our actual future results or performance may be materially different from what we expect. All forward-looking statements made in this prospectus are qualified by these cautionary statements.
Comparison of results between current and prior periods are not intended to express any future trends, or indications of future performance, unless expressed as such, and should only be viewed as historical data.
 
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USE OF PROCEEDS
We estimate that the net proceeds to us from this offering will be approximately $      (or $      if the underwriters exercise their option to purchase additional common shares from us in full), assuming an initial public offering price of $      per common share, which is the midpoint of the price range set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, after deducting the estimated underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated expenses of the offering that are payable by us.
Each $1.00 increase (decrease) in the assumed initial public offering price per common share would increase (decrease) our net proceeds, after deducting the estimated underwriting discounts and estimated commissions and expenses, by $      million, assuming that the number of common shares offered by us, as set forth on the cover of this prospectus, remains the same. Each increase (decrease) of 1,000,000 common shares in the number of common shares offered by us would increase (decrease) our net proceeds, after deducting the estimated underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated expenses, by approximately $      million, assuming no change in the assumed initial public offering price per share. Expenses of this offering will be paid by us.
The principal reasons for this offering are to finance our business, to increase our public profile and awareness, create a public market for our common shares and facilitate our future access to public equity markets. We plan to use the expected proceeds from this offering for the completion of our next prototype generation, the so-called generation III, to secure going concern until May 2023 and to secure or repay the down payments received until October 2021. Any remainder will be used for further investments to reach serial production.
Our expected use of net proceeds from this offering represents our current intentions based upon our present plans and business condition. As of the date of this prospectus, we cannot predict with certainty all of the particular uses for the net proceeds to be received upon the completion of this offering or the amounts that we will actually spend on the uses set forth above. The amounts and timing of our actual use of net proceeds will vary depending on numerous factors, including the factors described in “Risk Factors.” As a result, our management will have broad discretion in the application of the net proceeds of this offering, and investors will be relying on our judgment regarding the application of the net proceeds.
We believe that the anticipated net proceeds from this offering, together with our existing cash, cash equivalents, borrowings available to us and short-term investments, will, however, not enable us to fund our operating expenses and capital expenditure requirements to start serial production of the Sion for sales in European markets. Accordingly, our ability to continue as a going concern will be largely dependent on our ability to raise additional funds through debt or equity transactions, additional advance payments, or other means.
 
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DIVIDEND POLICY
We have never paid or declared any cash dividends in the past, and we do not anticipate paying any cash dividends in the foreseeable future. We intend to retain all available funds and any future earnings to fund the completion of the development of the Sion and the start of its serial production as well as the further development and expansion of our business. We may only pay dividends and other distributions from our reserves to the extent our shareholders’ equity (eigen vermogen) exceeds the sum of the paid-in and called-up share capital plus the reserves required to be maintained by Dutch law or by our articles of association and (if it concerns a distribution of profits) after adoption of the annual accounts by the general meeting from which it appears that such dividend distribution is allowed. Subject to such restrictions, any future determination to pay dividends or other distributions will be at the discretion of our management board with the approval of our supervisory board and will depend upon a number of factors, including our results of operations, financial condition, future prospects, contractual restrictions, restrictions imposed by applicable law and other factors our management board and supervisory board deem relevant.
Under our articles of association, our management board may decide that all or part of the profits are added to our reserves. After reservation of any profit, the remaining profit will be at the disposal of the general meeting at the proposal of our management board for distribution, subject to restrictions of Dutch law and approval by our supervisory board of such proposal by our management board. Our management board is permitted, subject to certain requirements, to declare interim dividends without the approval of the general meeting, but only with the approval of the supervisory board. Dividends and other distributions shall be made payable not later than the date determined by the management board. Claims to dividends and other distributions not made within five years from the date that such dividends or distributions became payable will lapse and any such amounts will be considered to have been forfeited to us (verjaring).
 
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CAPITALIZATION
The table below sets forth our cash and cash equivalents and capitalization as of June 30, 2021:

on an actual basis;

on a pro forma basis to give effect to the full conversion of the mandatory convertible senior notes into our common shares; and

on a pro forma as adjusted basis to give further effect to the issuance and sale of           common shares in this offering at an assumed initial public offering price of $      per common share, which is the midpoint of the price range set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, after deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us, as set forth under “Use of Proceeds” and excluding the underwriters’ option to purchase additional common shares.
You should read this table in conjunction with our consolidated financial statements and notes thereto included elsewhere in this prospectus as well as “About This Prospectus,” “Use of Proceeds” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.”
As of June 30, 2021
Actual
Pro forma
Pro forma as
adjusted(1)
(in € millions)
Cash and cash equivalents
26.1
Long-term debt (including current portion)
14.4
Equity:
Subscribed capital
6.5
Capital and other reserves
74.2
Accumulated deficit
(108.8)
Total equity
(28.1)
Total capitalization
(13.7)
(1)
A $1.00 increase or decrease in the assumed initial public offering price of $      per share, which is the midpoint of the price range set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, would increase or decrease the as adjusted amount of each of cash and cash equivalents, share capital, equity attributable to the equity holders of the Company and total capitalization by approximately $      million, assuming the number of shares offered by us, as set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, remains the same and after deducting the estimated underwriting discounts and commissions. An increase or decrease of 1,000,000 shares offered by us, as set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, would increase or decrease the as adjusted amount of each of cash and cash equivalents, share capital, equity attributable to the equity holders of the Company and total capitalization by approximately $      million, assuming no change in the assumed initial public offering price of $      per share, which is the midpoint of the price range set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, and after deducting the estimated underwriting discounts and commissions.
 
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DILUTION
If you invest in our common shares in this offering, your ownership interest will be diluted to the extent of the difference between the initial public offering price per share and the as adjusted net tangible book value per common share immediately after the completion of this offering.
As of June 30, 2021, we had a pro forma net tangible book value of €      million, corresponding to a pro forma net tangible book value of €      per common share. Historical net tangible book value per common share represents the amount of our total assets less our total liabilities, excluding intangible assets, divided by the total number of our common shares outstanding at June 30, 2021. Pro forma net tangible book value represents the amount of our total assets less our total liabilities, excluding intangible assets, divided by the total number of common shares issued and outstanding, after giving effect to the full conversion of (i) the mandatory convertible senior notes into our common shares.
After giving further effect to the issuance and sale of                 common shares offered by us in the offering at an assumed offering price of $      per common share, which is the midpoint of the price range set forth on the cover page of this prospectus and an exchange rate of $      per euro, after deducting the estimated underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us, our pro forma as adjusted net tangible book value as of June 30, 2021 would have been €      million (or $      million), representing €      (or $      ) per common share outstanding. This represents an immediate increase in pro forma as adjusted net tangible book value of €      (or $      ) per common share outstanding to existing shareholders and an immediate dilution in net tangible book value of €      (or $      ) per common share outstanding to new investors purchasing common shares in this offering. Dilution for this purpose represents the difference between the price per common share paid by these purchasers and the pro forma as adjusted net tangible book value per common share immediately after the completion of this offering.
The following table illustrates this dilution to new investors purchasing common shares in the offering, assuming either no exercise or full exercise of the underwriters’ option to purchase additional common shares:
No exercise
Full exercise
(in €)
(in $)
(in €)
(in $)
Assumed initial public offering price per common share
Historical net tangible book value as of June 30, 2021 per common share
Pro forma net tangible book value as of June 30, 2021 per common
share after giving effect to the full conversion of the mandatory convertible senior notes
Increase in pro forma net tangible book value attributable to new investors purchasing common shares in this offering
Pro forma as adjusted net tangible book value as of June 30, 2021 per common share after giving effect to the full conversion of the mandatory convertible senior notes and the offering
Dilution to new investors per common share
A $1.00 increase (decrease) in the assumed initial public offering price of $      per common share would increase (decrease) our pro forma as adjusted net tangible book value after this offering by $      per common share, and the dilution in pro forma as adjusted net tangible book value to new investors by $      per common share, assuming that the number of common shares offered by us, as set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, remains the same and after deducting the estimated underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us. Each increase (decrease) of           in the number of common shares offered by us would increase (decrease) our pro forma as adjusted net tangible book value after this offering by $      per common share, and decrease (increase) the dilution to investors participating in this offering by approximately $      per common share, assuming that the assumed initial public offering price remains the same and after deducting the estimated underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us.
If the underwriters were to fully exercise their option to purchase additional common shares from us, the pro forma as adjusted net tangible book value per common share after the offering would be $      per
 
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common share (€      per common share), and the dilution per common share to new investors would be $      per common share (€      per common share), in each case at the initial public offering price of $      per common share (€      per common share).
The following table summarizes, on a pro forma as adjusted basis, as of June 30, 2021, the number of common shares owned by our existing shareholders and to be owned by new investors purchasing common shares in this offering, the total consideration paid to us and the average price per common share paid by new investors purchasing common shares in this offering. The calculation below is based on an assumed initial public offering price of $      per common share, which is the midpoint of the price range set forth on the cover page of this prospectus, before deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses payable by us and excluding the underwriters’ option to purchase additional common shares from us:
Ordinary shares
Total consideration
Average
price per
ordinary
share
Number
Percent
Amount (in million)
Percent
Existing shareholders
     
     
     
     
     
New investors
Total
If the underwriters exercise the option to purchase additional common shares from us, the percentage of our common shares held by existing shareholders will decrease to approximately    % of the total number of our common shares outstanding after this offering and the percentage of our common shares held by new investors will increase to approximately    % of the total number of our common shares outstanding after this offering.
The total number of shares reflected in the discussion and tables above is based on the number of common shares outstanding as of the June 30, 2021 on a pro forma as adjusted basis.
To the extent we grant options or other equity awards to our employees or members of our management board or our supervisory board in the future, and those options or other equity awards are exercised in the future or other issuances of our common shares are made, there will be further dilution to new investors.
 
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MANAGEMENT’S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND
RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
You should read the following discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations in conjunction with our historical consolidated financial statements, prepared in accordance with IFRS as issued by IASB and the related notes thereto included elsewhere in this prospectus. This discussion contains forward-looking statements and involves numerous risks and uncertainties, including, but not limited to, those described in the “Risk Factors” section of this prospectus. Actual results could differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statements.
Overview
We believe we are a pioneer and technological leader in the field of solar-powered electric mobility. We are in the process of developing and commercializing a disruptive solar technology that would allow every vehicle to benefit from solar power. We intend to use this technology to create our solar and battery powered vehicle that we call the Sion. In parallel, we are in the process of starting to license and sell our proprietary solar technology to other manufacturers for different use cases, such as buses, trucks, camper vans, trains and even boats, in order to accelerate the transition towards sustainable transportation. We intend to generate revenues from the sale of our vehicles and, in the first production cycle, from emission certificate pooling as well as from the monetization of our proprietary solar technology.
Our disruptive solar technology allows for full solar integration. In the process of developing the Sion, we soon realized that the available solar technology was not well-suited for mobility applications. Traditional solar technology relies on glass to cover the solar cells. Glass is, however, heavy, not sufficiently flexible, expensive and dangerous in crash situations. Our polymer technology solves these issues. It is lightweight, allows for flexible surface integration via our patented injection molding process, is affordable due to fast and lean production and avoids/eliminates the risk of bodily harm caused by broken glass. We have also developed other critical components for the use of solar technology in mobility applications. We have developed our own on-board charger and, through our maximum power point tracker central unit, or MCU, solved the issue that solar cells will be mounted on different parts of the exterior, which will lead to uneven exposure to sunlight. Our technology allows for the seamless integration of solar cells into the body of a car, such as the Sion, and the charging of its battery through the power of the sun. However, our technology is much more versatile, and its use cases extend far beyond passenger cars, allowing for grid-independent charging and a reduction of running costs or total costs of ownership in transport related use cases, such as trucks, buses, recreational vehicles or boats. We have started to market our technology to other mobility or transport manufacturers. We have received indications of interest and first purchase orders and shipped pre-production samples to customers. Other manufacturers may also benefit from our technology. They may use our technology to retrofit existing vehicles, to extend the range of battery electric vehicles, or BEVs, for new production vehicles or to comply with emission regulations. The transport and logistics industries in particular are very focused on total cost of ownership, where our solar integration can reduce running cost significantly. We have several patents granted or within the filing-process protecting our proprietary technology. Additionally, we have up to four years of advanced development ahead of who we believe to be our relevant competitors thanks to the patents, the testing of a large number of different polymer materials and the several relevant components for full solar integration, such as power electronics, especially the MCU.
Our technology will be one of the distinctive features of the Sion. It will have the ability to recharge itself using solar energy panels installed on the exterior that leverage our polymer-based solar technology. We expect that solar power will reduce the number of charging intervals and, depending on the vehicle’s usage profile, may even eliminate the need for battery charging, positioning us to benefit from a significant competitive advantage over conventional electric vehicles. The Sion’s polymer exterior significantly reduces the need for expensive metal-stamping tools and machinery costs, and the integration of solar modules into the bodywork eliminates the need for a costly paint shop, which helps us to offer the Sion at a comparatively low initial net entry price of €21.4 thousand. Consistent with our mission to lower CO2 emissions, each Sion will be outfitted with technology that can connect to our car- and ride-sharing networks through our proprietary hardware and software solutions. We expect that the Sion will be convenient to operate and comparatively affordable providing it with the potential to disrupt the market.
 
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To make the Sion affordable for the mass market without compromising security or quality, we do things differently and, we believe, much more efficiently and sustainably than traditional car manufacturers or other pure EV manufacturers. We rely on a one-variant-only vehicle, third party production and business-to-consumer direct distribution, which we believe will enable us to maintain relatively low overhead costs, significantly reduce our capital expenditures, and position us to become a price-value leader compared to competitors’ offerings in the relevant car segments. All Sions will have the same exterior color and vehicle features, and will rely on existing off-the-shelf component parts from established automotive suppliers, such as Vitesco Technologies German GmbH (a former subsidiary of Continental AG), Hella GmbH & Co. KGaA and Casco Schoeller GmbH, resulting in economies of scale through the partial elimination of development costs, reduced purchasing and manufacturing complexity, reduced logistical challenges and inventory costs, and lower risks associated with quality control and testing, all of which should facilitate more rapid growth of our operations and positions us to offer the Sion. The production of the Sion is currently expected to be outsourced to a contract manufacturer at the former Saab Automobile AB (“SAAB”) plant in Trollhättan, Sweden. Our goal is to offset 100% of the CO2 emissions generated by the production of the Sion and our future vehicle models, with a view to achieving full CO2 neutrality during the production cycle. Rather than relying on dealerships to sell the Sion, we intend to rely on what we consider to be an innovative and effective way to sell directly to customers through our online platform. Customers can view the Sion, book a test drive and engage and place orders directly with us. As of August 31, 2021, we had more than 14,000 reservations with advance payments resulting in total net cash inflows of €38.8 million from our customers up from total net cash inflows of €37.9 million as of June 30, 2021. These reservations correspond to a net sales volume of approximately €300 million. However, our customers may cancel their reservations without penalty according to our general terms and conditions, if no binding purchase agreement has been concluded by an agreed deadline, which varies. Some reservations are already cancellable as of the date of this prospectus. We intend to begin delivering cars in the first half of 2023 and thereby fulfill customer reservations. See also “Risk Factors—Risks Related to Our Business and Operations—Any delay in commercial production of the Sion could adversely affect us.
With respect to our solar technology licensing, we have shipped first pre-production samples to customers. With respect to the Sion, we are still in the pre-production phase and presented the second fully functional prototype generation in January 2021. The funding that we expect to obtain from this offering will not be sufficient to secure our needs through the start of production of the Sion. Assuming that we are able to raise the amounts we still need following this offering, we currently plan to commence commercial production of the Sion in the first half of 2023. For the six months ended June 30, 2021, we had a loss for the period of €25.7 million, compared to a loss for the period of €9.8 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020. Our loss for the period for the year ended December 31, 2020 was a loss of €56.0 million. We have incurred net losses since our inception in March 2016, resulting in an accumulated deficit of €108.8 million as of June 30, 2021 up from €83.1 million of December 31, 2020. We believe that we will continue to incur losses and depend on external financing in the foreseeable future at least until we commence material deliveries of the Sion and the time when we significantly scale our operations, including the monetization of our solar technology.
Our Business Model
We expect to generate revenue mainly from sales of the Sion, monetization of our solar technology and initially also from emission certificate pooling. We also expect to generate revenue to a lesser degree, from our car- and ride-sharing application.

Sales of the Sion and Future Vehicle Models: We plan to position the Sion as an affordable, solar-electric vehicle for the mass market. As of August 31, 2021, we received approximately 14,000 reservations with advance payments resulting in total net cash inflows of €38.8 million. These reservations correspond to an assumed aggregate sales volume of approximately €300 million based on our targeted initial net price of €21.4 thousand per vehicle and assuming that all reservations result in sales. In the longer term, we plan to introduce additional solar electric vehicle models.

Monetization of our Solar Technology: The potential scope of application of our solar technology goes significantly beyond the Sion. We believe that our solar technology has the potential to be used in existing markets without significant additional development, for example for trucks and trailers, trains, ships, buildings and charging stations. We have already received purchase orders or entered into
 
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several letters of intent for partnerships, including with manufacturers of trailers, autonomous electric shuttles, trains, trucks, buses and yachts that may use our technology in their own products. We may also produce and sell certain selected solar components, license our patents to third parties or seek to generate service revenue from providing engineering services to third parties.

Emission Certificate Pooling: Many developed countries have environmental regulations and incentives that seek to reduce CO2 emissions. For example, under EU regulation, any automotive manufacturer who fails to reduce the average emissions of its fleet sold in the EU to a specific CO2 emission per kilometer is subject to penalty payments. A manufacturer can avoid, or reduce, penalty payments, if it pools its emissions with those of manufacturers that exceed emission targets, such as manufacturers of zero or low emission vehicles. The economic benefit is shared between the pooling participations, providing us with an additional source of revenue. We believe that our ability to participate in these pooling arrangements will comprise a meaningful percentage of our future revenue stream during the first production cycle that we can generate at a relatively low cost.

Car-sharing and Ride-pooling Application: We have developed a car-sharing and ride-pooling application, which will be installed ex works in every Sion that is purchased by our customers. The application can also be added to any third-party vehicle at minimal cost to the owner. The application includes algorithmic technology that can match ride-seekers with drivers, and that can match drivers seeking temporary use of a car with owners seeking to rent out their vehicles. Matches are formed through a network of riders and car owners who have to be registered to use our services. We will receive commissions on each transaction booked through our application and expect to generate incremental revenue from this platform, which will operate at marginal cost. We anticipate that Sion owners will make up our initial market and that over time the network will grow to include owners of other vehicles as well.
On the expense side, we currently intend to focus on benefiting from economies of scale, controlling expenses and reducing significant capital expenditure to position us to become the price/value leader in our market. This approach is illustrated by our current strategy:

One-Variant-Only: The Sion is a one-variant-only model, resulting in economies of scale, less complexity, lower logistics and inventory costs and lower quality and testing risk.

No Sono Motors-Owned Factory: We do not currently intend to own a factory, as the Sion will be produced by a contract manufacturer at the former SAAB plant in Trollhättan, Sweden.

Asset-Light Manufacturing: The Sion’s polymer body eliminates the need for expensive steel stamping tools and the integration of solar modules into the bodywork eliminates the need for a costly paint shop.

Use of Off-the-shelf Components: Certain standard automotive parts will be sourced as off-the-shelf components from established automotive suppliers, allowing us to save development costs and position ourselves to benefit from economies of scale.

Online Direct Sales: We believe that online direct sales will allow us to reduce distribution costs by approximately 15%, as we do not have to pay dealer margins.
Factors Affecting Our Financial Condition and Results of Operation
We believe that our performance and future success depend on several factors that present significant opportunities for us but also pose risks and challenges, including those set forth in the section entitled “Risk Factors.”
Start of Serial Production of the Sion
We currently do not generate any revenue from our operations and do not expect to generate revenue until we start production and delivery of the Sion. We believe that being one of the first manufacturers of solar electric vehicles will enable us to immediately capture a share of the market. While it is not yet commercially available, we have received significant reservations and advance payments from customers for the Sion. Our customers may cancel a reservation without penalty according to our general terms and conditions, if no binding purchase agreement has been concluded by an agreed deadline. The relevant
 
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deadline agreed on with the customers reflected the start of serial production envisaged by us at the time the relevant reservations were made. The timing of such permitted cancellations varies, as we have amended our general terms and conditions extending the relevant cancellation deadline to reflect delays of the intended commencement of serial production of our vehicles. We have also asked some of our customers to agree to amendments of our terms and conditions that extended the date at which customers may cancel a reservation. However, not all customers who previously placed a reservation have yet accepted such amended terms and conditions. As of June 30, 2021, 11% of our advance payments were cancelable. An additional 20% will become cancelable on January 1, 2022, an additional 64% on January 1, 2023 and an additional 5% on July 1, 2023.
While we finalize development and prepare the launch of production of the Sion, we offered selected customers who made an advance payment for the Sion to convert this advance payment into a lease contract for a Renault Zoe in 2020. This offer allowed consumers to already drive an electric car and positioned us to avoid cancellations and generate income from commissions we receive for every lease agreement entered into. We have recently renewed this offer under slightly modified conditions and, in addition, offered Sion reservation holders to lease a vehicle at discounted conditions from a start-up car rental company, which claims to focus on sustainability. Through August 31, 2021, we issued vouchers for €0.4 million, of which €0.3 million have been cashed in. We may continue to provide similar offers in the future to bridge the period until we make deliveries to our customers.
Monetization of Our Solar Technology
As of October 2021, we have four patents pending and three patents have been granted. Our patent applications mainly relate to our solar technology. We also plan to license our technologies to third parties. We have already received purchase orders or entered into several letters of intent for partnerships, including with manufacturers of trailers, autonomous electric shuttles, trains, trucks, buses and yachts that may use our technology in their own products. We may also consider the development, general contracting and sale of certain selected solar components to third parties. Revenue from these activities would allow us to start generating revenue potentially before we start selling the Sion and could position us to be less dependent on sales of the Sion.
Ability to Control Cost of Sales
We currently do not incur any cost of sales. When we start selling the Sion, our profitability will depend on our ability to organize the manufacturing of the Sion in an efficient manner. As part of the manufacturing process, we will purchase a wide variety of components, raw materials, and other supplies. Due to our solar technology, we are able to significantly reduce the battery costs and expenses for painting the body of the Sion. We expect that our cost of sales will be affected primarily by our production volume. Our cost of sales will also be affected, to a lesser extent, by fluctuations in certain raw material prices. As our business grows in scale, we expect to have higher bargaining power and hence more favorable terms from suppliers, including pricing and payment terms.
Execution of Effective Marketing
Our ability to execute effective marketing will affect the growth of our reservations. Demand for the Sion will directly affect our sales volume, which will in turn contribute to our revenue growth and our ability to achieve profitability. Vehicle reservations may depend, in part, on whether prospective customers find our vehicles more affordable and convenient than other environmentally friendly vehicles, which in turn depends on prospective customers’ perception of our brand and the advantages of our solar technology. We guide our marketing expenditure by analyzing the effectiveness of marketing channels based on our needs at various stages of sales and brand awareness. Effective marketing can help amplify our efforts in efficiently increasing vehicle reservations.
Development Expenses
We will continue to incur significant expenses related to the development of the Sion as well as refinement of our technology. We expect that our research and development expenses will constitute the most substantial part of our expenses in future periods. We will only incur development expenses to the extent
 
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we believe that we are able to secure necessary financing. Based on our business plan, we will depend on significant additional financing for additional development activities, start of serial production and obtaining street certification. We intend to raise the needed financing in part through this offering.
Capital Expenditure
We operate on an asset-light basis, which means that our capital expenditure is very limited. The Sion will be produced by a contract manufacturer, the Sion’s polymer body eliminates the need for expensive steel stamping tools and certain standard automotive parts will be sourced as off-the-shelf components. Accordingly, we expect our investments outside of research and development and ongoing general and administrative expenses to be of a limited nature. Between 2021 and the planned start of production of the Sion in the first half of 2023, we expect significant capital expenditure to be borne by us for hard and soft tooling. Over the same period, we also expect to incur expenses for engineering work that NEVS will invoice to Sono Motors.
Unused Tax Loss
We have substantial carried-forward tax losses resulting from our negative taxable income in 2020, 2019 and prior fiscal years. Given that our estimated taxable income in the foreseeable future may not be sufficient to recover these carried-forward losses we have not recognized deferred tax assets on the balance sheet as of December 31, 2019, December 31, 2020 or June 30, 2021. Our unused tax losses as of December 31, 2020, for which no tax asset has been recognized were €51.3 million (corporate income tax) and €51.1 million (trade tax). Assuming a total tax rate of 32.98%, our unused corporate income and trade tax losses correspond to a potential undiscounted tax benefit of €16.9 million. Only up to 60% of our annual taxable income, to the extent such taxable income exceeds €1 million, may be offset against tax loss carry forwards. The remaining 40% of the taxable income are subject to corporate income and trade tax under the so-called minimum taxation rules. Annual taxable income for corporate income tax and trade tax purposes of up to €1 million could fully be offset against tax loss carry-forwards.
Conversion Stock Option Program (CSOP)
In the first half of 2018, we set up two similar employee participation programs for our staff members and selected managers of the company based on virtual shares. In December 2020, we offered all participants of the aforementioned employee participation programs as well as six additional members of our staff to exchange their virtual shares for actual stock options under a newly set up employee participation program (conversion stock option program or CSOP), which is equity settled. As of December 31, 2020, 88 employees, including all those participating in the original employee participation program but one, have joined the CSOP. We recorded expenses in the amount of €32.2 million for the implementation of the CSOP in 2020.
COVID-19
COVID-19 is still the globally dominant topic. In the first half of 2021, successful vaccination campaigns led to the lowering of state and private measures. In line with the economic recovery associated with these reliefs, the automotive industry in Germany expects a slight increase in the number of vehicles sold in 2021 as compared to the prior year, but expectations are still below the pre-COVID-19 level. With regard to us, in the first half of 2021, COVID-19 had a slightly negative impact on advance payments received from customers. The impact of COVID-19 on the current situation continues to improve compared to 2020 but is still negatively impacted compared to the pre-COVID-19 state.
The continuing COVID-19 measures may stabilize the existing trend to work from home, which could result in lower demand for cars and could negatively impact our sales and marketing activities. The pandemic may also affect the interest of our customers in their car-sharing and ride-pooling networks. Based on the most recent information, COVID-19 might continue to have a negative effect on advance payments received from customers in 2021. Other than that, we cannot yet foresee the full extent of COVID-19’s impact on our business and operations and such impact will depend on future developments of the outbreak, including new information concerning the global severity of and actions taken to contain the ongoing pandemic, which are highly uncertain and unpredictable. These aspects could have a material impact on our result from operations, liquidity and capital management, including financing. We will continue to monitor the
 
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situation and the effect of this development on its liquidity and capital management. At the same time, we have taken actions to maintain operations and protect employees from infection.
Components of Our Results of Operations
Revenues
In the years ended December 31, 2019, 2020 and the six months ended June 30, 2021, we did not generate any revenues as we only started monetizing our solar technology in the second half of 2021 and as the start of the Sion’s production is currently only planned to start in the first half of 2023.
Cost of Sales
In the years ended December 31, 2019, 2020 and the six months ended June 30, 2021, we did not incur any cost of sales as we only started monetizing our solar technology in the second half of 2021 and as the start of the Sion’s production is currently only planned to start in the first half of 2023.
Operating Expenses
Our operating expenses consist of research and development expenses and selling, general and administrative expenses as well as other operating income.
Cost of Research and Development
There were no research expenses included in the profit and loss of the Company in the years ended December 31, 2019 and 2020 or the six months ended June 30, 2021, as we do not perform research. Our development expenses consist of (i) personnel expenses for our development staff, including salaries and bonuses and the relevant share of expenses relating to our the CSOP, (ii) development cost for prototypes, our car-sharing and ride-pooling application and solar integration, (iii) professional services and (iv) other expenses. Development costs are expensed as incurred.
Selling and Distribution Expenses
Our selling and distribution expenses consist of (i) employee compensation for employees responsible for marketing activities, such as roadshows, test rides and social media, including salaries and bonuses and the relevant share of expenses relating to our the employee participation program (CSOP), (ii) marketing and promotional expenses, (iii) expenses for professional services and (iv) other expenses.
General and Administrative Expenses
Our general and administrative expenses consist of (i) personnel expenses for employees responsible for areas such as finance, human resources, business development, administration, including salaries and bonuses and the relevant share of expenses relating to our the employee participation program (CSOP), (ii) expenses for professional services, such as accounting, tax, legal and other external services, (iii) expenses without sufficient supporting documentation, including underlying invoices, and (iv) other expenses.
Other Operating Income/Expenses
Our other operating income primarily consists of agency fees, donations, statutory reimbursements for personnel expenses and government grants.
Our other operating expenses solely included expenses that related to project terminations with a supplier.
Other Interest and Similar Income
Other interest and similar income relates to interest income from VAT taxes.
Interest and Other Expenses
Interest and other expenses largely consists of interest expenses related to the compounding effect for advance payments received from customers and financial liabilities.
 
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Results of Operations
The following table shows information taken from our consolidated statement of income (loss) and statements of comprehensive income (loss) for the years ended December 31, 2019 and December 31, 2020 and for the six months ended June 30, 2020 and June 30, 2021:
For the year ended
December 31,
For the six month ended
June 30,
2020
2019(1)
2021
2020
(in € millions)
(in € millions)
Revenue
 —   — 
Cost of sales
 —   — 
Gross profit
 —   — 
Cost of research and development
(30.5) (4.9) (13.5) (6.4)
Selling and distribution expenses
(9.1) (2.1) (1.6) (1.1)
General and administrative expenses
(14.4) (2.4) (8.3) (1.5)
Other operating income/expenses
(0.0) 0.2 0.4 0.1
Impairment losses on financial assets
(0.0) (0) (0)
Operating loss
(54.0) (9.3) (23.0) (8.9)
Other interest and similar income
0.0  —  0
Interest and other expenses
(2.0) (0.7) (2.6) (0.9)
Loss before tax
(56.0) (10.0) (25.6) (9.8)
Tax on income
0 0
Deferred taxes on expense
(0)
Loss for the period
(56.0) (10.0) (25.7) (9.8)
Other comprehensive loss
(0) (0.1)
Total comprehensive loss for the period
(56.0) (10.0) (25.8) (9.8)
(1)
Other interest and similar income, interest and other expenses, loss before tax, loss for the period and total comprehensive loss for the period were restated for 2019 due to a change in accounting policies in accordance with IAS 8 (Accounting policies, changes in accounting estimates and errors) with respect to a reclassification of advance payments received by customers from financial liabilities in accordance with IFRS 9 to contract liabilities in accordance with IFRS 15. Please also refer to Note 4 to the consolidated financial statements included in this prospectus.
Revenue
Comparison of the Six Month Period ended June 30, 2020 and 2021
For the six months ended June 30, 2020 and June 30, 2021, we did not generate any revenue from our operations.
Comparison of the Year ended December 31, 2019 and 2020
In 2019 and 2020, we did not generate any revenue from our operations.
Cost of Sales
Comparison of the Six Month Period ended June 30, 2020 and 2021
We recorded no cost of sales in the six months ended June 30, 2020 and June 30, 2021.
Comparison of the Year ended December 31, 2019 and 2020
We recorded no cost of sales in 2019 and 2020.
Gross profit
Comparison of the Six Month Period ended June 30, 2020 and 2021
We generated no gross profit in the six months ended June 30, 2020 and June 30, 2021.
 
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Comparison of the Year ended December 31, 2019 and 2020
In 2019 and 2020, we did not generate gross profit.
Cost of Research and Development
Comparison of the Six Month Period ended June 30, 2020 and 2021
Cost of research and development increased from €6.4 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020 to €13.5 million in the six months ended June 30, 2021, primarily due to an increase in development cost of prototypes, which increased from €4.0 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020 to €8.8 million in the six months ended June 30, 2021 resulting from the development of our new prototypes. Personal expenses increased from €1.7 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020 to €3.1 million in the six months ended June 30, 2021, mainly due to expenses related to the CSOP. In the six months periods ended June 30, 2020 and June 30, 2021, there were no research expenses, as we do not perform research. As the recognition criteria for the capitalization of development cost have not been met, all development expenses were recognized in profit or loss as incurred in the six months periods ended June 30, 2020 and June 30, 2021.
Comparison of the Year ended December 31, 2019 and 2020
Cost of research and development increased from €4.9 million in 2019 to €30.5 million in 2020, primarily due to an increase in personnel expenses for our development staff resulting from the implementation of our CSOP in 2020, which accounted for expenses of €17.7 million. In addition, development costs for prototypes increased from €1.6 million in 2019 to €7.3 million in 2020 resulting from the development of our new prototypes. In 2019 and 2020, there were no research expenses, as we do not perform research. As the recognition criteria for the capitalization of development cost have not been met, all development expenses were recognized in profit or loss as incurred in 2019 and 2020.
Selling and Distribution Expenses
Comparison of the Six Month Period ended June 30, 2020 and 2021
Selling and distribution expenses increased from €1.1 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020 to €1.6 million in the six months ended June 30, 2021, primarily due to an increase in personnel expenses for our employees responsible for marketing activities as well as an increase in external services expenses related to marketing activities.
Comparison of the Year ended December 31, 2019 and 2020
Selling and distribution expenses increased from €2.1 million in 2019 to €9.1 million in 2020, primarily due to an increase in personnel expenses for our employees responsible for marketing activities resulting from the implementation of our CSOP, which accounted for expenses of €6.9 million in 2020. Additionally, selling and distribution expenses mainly consisted of personnel expenses for employees responsible for marketing activities such as roadshows, test rides and social media.
General and Administrative Expenses
Comparison of the Six Month Period ended June 30, 2020 and 2021
General and administrative expenses increased from €1.5 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020 to €8.3 million in the six months ended June 30, 2021, primarily due to an increase in personnel expenses for employees responsible for areas such as finance, human resources, business development and administration mainly resulting from the implementation of our CSOP. In addition, expenses for professional services increased from €0.5 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020 to €3.2 million for the six months ended June 30, 2021 resulting from accounting, tax and legal services as well as other external services related to the preparation of our financial statements.
Comparison of the Year ended December 31, 2019 and 2020
General and administrative expenses increased from €2.4 million in 2019 to €14.4 million in 2020, primarily due to an increase in personnel expenses for employees responsible for areas such as finance,
 
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human resources, business development and administration resulting from the implementation of our CSOP, which accounted for expenses of €7.5 million in 2020. In addition, expenses for professional services increased from €0.7 million in 2019 to €4.8 million in 2020 resulting from accounting, tax and legal services as well as other external services related to the initial preparation and audit of financial statements.
Other Operating Income/Expenses
Comparison of the Six Month Period ended June 30, 2020 and 2021
Other operating income/expenses changed from income of €0.1 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020 to income of €0.4 million in the six months ended June 30, 2021.
Comparison of the Year ended December 31, 2019 and 2020
Other operating income increased from €0.2 million in 2019 to €0.3 million in 2020. In 2020, other operating income mainly included agency fees from a conversion offer, which allowed selected customers who made advance payments to enter into a lease agreement with Renault for a Renault ZOE and to use their advance payments to partly offset their lease payments, donations, statutory reimbursements for personnel expenses and government grants. This conversion offer ended in 2020.
Other operating expenses amounted to €0.3 million in 2020 and solely included expenses relating to a project termination with a supplier.
Operating Loss, Loss for the Period
Comparison of the Six Month Period ended June 30, 2020 and 2021
Operating loss increased from €8.9 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020 to €23.0 million in the six months ended June 30, 2021, primarily due to an increase in cost of research and development and general and administrative expenses. Subtracting other interest and similar income and subtracting interest and other expenses and tax on income, loss for the period increased from a loss of €9.8 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020 to a loss of €25.7 million in the six months ended June 30, 2021.
Comparison of the Year ended December 31, 2019 and 2020
Operating loss increased from a loss of €9.3 million in 2019 to a loss of €54.0 million in 2020 primarily due to an increase in personnel expenses resulting from the implementation of our CSOP, the development of our new prototypes and professional services primarily relating to the preparation and audit of our consolidated financial statements and other professional services relating to the issue of our pre-IPO mandatory convertible bonds and this offering. Subtracting other interest and similar income and subtracting interest and other expenses and tax on income, loss for the period increased from a loss of €10.0 million in 2019 to a loss of €56.0 million in 2020.
Liquidity and Capital Resources
As of June 30, 2021, we had cash and cash equivalents of €26.1 million compared to €43.3 million as of December 31, 2020. Our cash and cash equivalents consist primarily of cash in bank accounts.
We are in the process of developing a solar electric vehicle, the Sion. We currently do not generate any revenue from our operations. We incur, however, significant expenses related to the development of the Sion, refinement of our technology, marketing activities and general and administrative functions. In order to cover these expenses and prepare for production of the Sion, we rely on external financing and expect to continue to rely on external financing. We have mainly raised capital in the form of equity or debt capital. We have also raised capital through advance payments on reservations for the Sion. We may, however, not be able to access all of these advance payments, as some of the customers used PayPal for their advance payments. Since March 2020, we have no access to these amounts reserved by PayPal in line with PayPal’s relevant terms and conditions and it is unclear when these amounts will be released to us. As we expect a payment of these funds by PayPal to us within the next twelve months, these funds at PayPal have been classified as current financial assets. Customers may also cancel their reservations for the Sion, in which case we will have to refund the advance payment. We have also raised funds through the placement of pre-IPO mandatory
 
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convertible bonds. Finally, we have received limited grants from government agencies and similar bodies like the EU for participation in specific research and development projects. As of June 30, 2021, our cash and cash equivalents amounted to €26.1 million. During the six months ended June 30, 2021, net financing was received from advance payments from customers of €0.9 million and proceeds from the issue of shares to private investors of €1.5 million. Our ability to raise external financing has been, and will continue to be, highly dependent on further progress in the development of the Sion and successful communication to potential external investors.
Our ability to continue as a going concern is largely dependent on our ability to raise additional funds through debt or equity transactions, additional advance payments, or other means, and ultimately, to achieve serial production of the Sion. It is uncertain if sufficient financing can be obtained to continue as a going concern and further to achieve serial production of the Sion. Our forecast cash required to fund operations, excluding future financing efforts, indicates that we do not have sufficient funds to support operations through the twelve-month period from the date of issuance of the condensed consolidated interim financial statements included in this prospectus. Accordingly, there is substantial doubt about our ability to continue as a going concern within twelve-months from the date of issuance of these financial statements. Based on the cash position as of August 31, 2021 and our business plan, excluding any targeted proceeds from an initial public offering, as of August 31, 2021, the Group would become insolvent by December 2021 or shortly thereafter if no additional financing can be raised.
We plan to address this going concern uncertainty by raising the required financing through this offering, where we seek to raise sufficient funds to finalize the development of the next generation prototype, the so-called generation III, which is the basis for the serial production and thus an important milestone in our business plan. As further financing is currently uncertain, the IPO proceeds will also be used to maintain liquidity until May 2023 to meet legal financial obligations, to pay ongoing overhead cost and to maintain going concern of the Company until May 2023. Additional financing will be necessary to undertake additional development activities for the car and solar technology to begin serial production and pay overhead costs.
See also Note 3.1 to the condensed consolidated interim financial statements as of and for the six months ended June 30, 2021 included this prospectus.
Consolidated Cash Flow Statements
The following table shows selected information taken from our consolidated cash flow statements for the years ended December 31, 2019 and 2020 and for the six months ended June 30, 2020 and June 30, 2021:
For the year ended
December 31,
For the six months
ended June 30
2020
2019(1)
2021
2020
(in € millions)
(in € millions)
Net cash flows from operating activities
(1.2) (8.8) (17.8) 11.9
Net cash flows from investing activities
(0) (1.1) (0.5) (0)
Net cash flows from financing activities
44.1 8.8 1.2 3.1
Net (decrease) increase in cash and cash equivalents
42.9 (1.1) (17.1) 15.0
Cash and cash equivalents at the beginning of the financial year
0.4 1.5 43.3 0.4
Cash and cash equivalents at end of year
43.3 0.4 26.1 15.4
(1)
Net cash flows from operating activities, net cash flows from investing activities and net cash flows from financing activities were restated for 2019 due to a change in accounting policies in accordance with IAS 8 (Accounting policies, changes in accounting estimates and errors) with respect to a reclassification of advance payments received by customers from financial liabilities in accordance with IFRS 9 to contract liabilities in accordance with IFRS 15. Please also refer to Note 4 to the consolidated financial statements included in this prospectus.
Net cash flows from operating activities
Comparison of the Six Month Period ended June 30, 2020 and 2021
Net cash flows from operating activities decreased from a cash inflow of €11.9 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020 to a cash outflow of €17.8 million in the six months ended June 30, 2021. This
 
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change was mainly due to high cash inflows from advance payments received from customers in the six months ended June 30, 2020, which did not recur in the six months ended June 30, 2021 and an increase in the cash effective loss for the period.
Comparison of the Year ended December 31, 2019 and 2020
Net cash flows from operating activities increased from a cash outflow of €8.8 million in 2019 to a cash outflow of €1.2 million in 2020. An increase in the cash effective operating loss of €10.0 million in 2019 to €56.0 million in 2020 adjusted for non-cash items (primarily relating to expenses for our CSOP) as well as a cash outflow relating to an increase in other assets was offset by a cash inflow of €26.4 million relating to an increase of reservations with advance payments from our customers.
Net cash flows from investing activities
Comparison of the Six Month Period ended June 30, 2020 and 2021
Net cash flows from investing activities decreased from a cash outflow of €0.0 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020 to a cash outflow of €0.5 million in the six months ended June 30, 2021, primarily due to a decrease of cash outflows relating to purchase of property, plant and equipment.
Comparison of the Year ended December 31, 2019 and 2020
Net cash flows from investing activities increased from a cash outflow of €1.1 million in 2019 to a cash outflow of €0 million in 2020, primarily due to a decrease of cash outflows relating to purchase of property, plant and equipment, which decreased from €1.1 million in 2019 to €0.0 million in 2020.
Net cash flows from financing activities
Comparison of the Six Month Period ended June 30, 2020 and 2021
Net cash flows from financing activities decreased from a cash inflow of €3.1 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020, which mainly included proceeds from borrowings, to a cash inflow of €1.2 million in the six months ended June 30, 2021, which mainly included proceeds from issues of shares.
Comparison of the Year ended December 31, 2019 and 2020
Net cash flows from financing activities increased from a cash inflow of €8.8 million in 2019 to a cash inflow of €44.1 million in 2020, primarily due to an increase of proceeds from the issue of shares to private investors and from borrowings in connection with our last funding round before this offering.
Financial Liabilities
The table below summarizes the maturity profile of our financial liabilities based on contractual undiscounted payments as of June 30, 2021:
Carrying
amount
Less than
1 year
1 - 5 years
More than
5 years
(in € millions)
Trade and other payables
6.9 6.9
Loans and participation rights
5.8 2.1 9.0
Convertible notes
8.5  — 
Lease liabilities
3.3 0.3 1.3 0.6
Total 24.5 9.3 10.3 0.6
Changes in Accounting Policies and Disclosures
In 2019, we accounted for advance payments from customers as financial liabilities in accordance with IFRS 9. In 2020, due to the frequency of these transactions, we re-evaluated and determined that these advance payments should have been accounted for as contract liabilities in accordance with IFRS 15 due to our commitment to deliver a vehicle to customers (if they choose so) in exchange for their advance payment.
 
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In accordance with IAS 8 (Accounting policies, changes in accounting estimates and errors) this change in accounting policy has been applied retrospectively.
Certain new accounting standards and interpretations have been published that are not mandatory for the consolidated financial statements as of December 31, 2020 and have not been early-adopted by us. These standards are not expected to have a material impact on the Company’s consolidated financial statements in the current or future reporting periods and on foreseeable future transactions.
Significant Accounting Judgments, Estimates and Assumptions
The preparation of our consolidated financial statements in accordance with IFRS as issued by the IASB requires us to make judgments, estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts in the consolidated financial statements. We continually evaluate our judgments and estimates in relation to assets, liabilities, contingent liabilities and expenses. We base our judgments and estimates on historical experience and on other various factors, we believe to be reasonable under the circumstances, the result of which forms the basis of the carrying values of assets and liabilities that are not readily apparent from other sources. Actual results may differ from these estimates under different assumptions and conditions and may materially affect the financial results or the financial position reported in future periods.
In the process of applying the accounting policies, we have made the following judgments, which have the most significant effect on the amounts recognized in our consolidated financial statements.
Going Concern
We assessed our ability to continue as a going concern and evaluated whether there are conditions and events, considered in the aggregate, that raise substantial doubt about our ability to continue as a going concern using all information available about the future, focusing on the 12 months following the issuance date of the condensed consolidated interim financial statements.
As of June 30, 2021, we had an accumulated a deficit according to IFRS of €108.8 million (December 31, 2020: €83.1 million), of which €28.1 million was not covered by equity (December 31, 2020: €5.0 million). Historically, we have financed our operations primarily through capital raises and with loans from shareholders and private investors as well as through advance payments received from customers. Since our inception, we have incurred recurring losses and negative cash flows from operations.
In the six months ended June 30, 2021, we had net losses for the period of €25.7 million (€9.8 million in the six months ended June 30, 2020). We expect to continue to generate operating losses for the foreseeable future until the start of production of the Sion and possibly later. While we seek to increase monetization of our technology, we do not anticipate that we will generate commercial revenue or positive operating cash flows from vehicle sales of the Sion until the start of production or later. Management anticipates in its current plan that the Sion will generate high one-digits gross margins in the mid-term after start of production (SOP). In addition, management expects revenues from emission certificate pooling under relevant EU regulations on CO2 target emissions (“CO2 pooling”) and from the monetization of their solar technology and other expected revenues from after-sales and the sharing business.
Our ability to continue as a going concern is largely dependent on our ability to raise additional funds through debt or equity transactions, additional advance payments, or other means, and ultimately, to achieve serial production of the Sion. It is uncertain if sufficient financing can be obtained to continue as a going concern and further to achieve serial production of the Sion. Our forecasted cash required to fund operations, excluding future financing efforts, indicates that we do not have sufficient funds to support operations through the twelve month period from the issuance date of these financial statements. Accordingly, there is substantial doubt about the Group’s ability to continue as a going concern within twelve-months from the issuance date of our condensed consolidated interim financial statements as of and for the six months ended June 30, 2021. Based on our cash position as of August 31, 2021 and our business plan as of August 31, 2021 and excluding any proceeds from this offering, we will become insolvent by December 2021 or shortly thereafter if no additional financing can be raised.
Securing the financing of development activities and operations represents an ongoing challenge for us. Structural changes in the German and international automotive industry in the recent past as well as changes
 
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in the capital markets have made it difficult to attract large, strategic investors. Additionally, the ongoing corona virus-pandemic may negatively affect our business, liquidity and financial position going forward, as further described Note 3.2 to the unaudited condensed consolidated interim financial statements included in this prospectus and in the section “Risk Factors.”
We intend to address this going concern uncertainty by raising the required financing through this offering. We expect to use the expected proceeds mainly to finalize the development of our next generation prototype, the so-called generation III, which is the basis for the serial production and thus an important milestone in our business plan. As further financing is currently uncertain, the expected proceeds from this offering will also be used to maintain liquidity until May 2023 (including a reserve of €39 million to maintain the ability to repay customer advance payments) to meet legal financial obligations, to pay ongoing overhead cost and to maintain going concern of the Company until May 2023. Additional financing will be necessary to undertake additional development activities for the Sion and solar technology to begin serial production and pay overhead costs.
The timely raising of funding through this IPO of at least €149 million as well as obtaining further required financing, based on management’s current estimates, of at least €205 million (by way of a second offering or other means of financing) is crucial for our ability to achieve start of serial production within the first half of 2023. For the period after start of production, we expect that the operating business can stay solvent primarily based on the anticipated sales and (if necessary) further financing means such as a working capital credit line. There is no certainty that we will be successful in obtaining sufficient funding on terms acceptable to us or even obtain additional funding at all. If we are unable to obtain additional funding in due time, for example if the IPO is unsuccessful or an insufficient amount is raised in the IPO transaction, or an unsuccessful follow-on offering or inability to raise other means of funding or if funding needs increase beyond the current projections, we will be forced to delay, reduce, or eliminate some or all of our development activities and production efforts and, subsequently, will be subject to cancellations and demands for repayment of advance payments received from customers and other financing received, which will lead to a liquidity shortage or may even lead to the insolvency of the Sono Group.
Our unaudited condensed consolidated interim financial statements included in this prospectus have been prepared on a going concern basis, which contemplates the realization of assets and satisfaction of liabilities and commitments in the ordinary course of business. Our condensed consolidated interim financial statements as of and for the six months ended June 30, 2021 do not include any adjustments relating to the recoverability and classification of recorded asset amounts or the amounts and classification of liabilities that may result from the outcome of this uncertainty.
Remuneration based on shares (share-based payments)
For equity-settled share-based payment transactions we initially measure on the grant date the fair value of the services received by reference to the fair value of the equity-settled instruments granted. The fair value measurement of the stock options for the equity-settled share-based transactions requires assumptions about the relevant input data for the use of the Black-Scholes model for the pricing of the transactions. The expected life of the stock options is based on current expectations and is not necessarily indicative of exercise patterns that may occur. The expected volatility was based on an evaluation of historical volatilities of comparable listed peer group companies. The expected volatility reflects the assumption that the historical volatility over a period similar to the life of the stock options is indicative of future trends, which may not necessarily be the actual outcome. For further details about the input factors see note 10.3 Remuneration based on shares (share-based payment) in our consolidated financial statements included elsewhere in this prospectus.
Impact of COVID-19
We cannot yet foresee the full extent of COVID-19’s impact on our business and operations and such impact will depend on future developments of the outbreak, including new information concerning the global severity of and actions taken to contain the outbreak, which are highly uncertain and unpredictable. The effects could have a material impact on our results of operations, liquidity and capital management. We will continue to monitor the situation and the effect of this development on our liquidity and capital management. At the same time, we have taken actions to maintain operations and protect employees from
 
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infection. In 2020, COVID-19 had a slightly negative impact on order and advance payments received from customers. Based on the most current information available, we expect COVID-19 to continue to negatively impact orders and advance payments received from customers in 2021.
Sono Points
We use advance payments made by customers in connection with reservations to finance our operations. Reservations entitle customers to conclude a contract for the purchase of the Sion. A customer can withdraw from the reservation if he or she decides not to conclude the purchase contract or we have not offered a purchase contract by the respective date defined by the underlying terms and conditions. In December 2019, we launched a crowdfunding campaign with the aim of raising a predefined target amount. In connection with the campaign, so-called Sono Points were introduced and communicated on December 15, 2019. Our three founders, Laurin Hahn, Navina Persteiner and Jona Christians, announced that they would be giving a majority of their profit participation rights (the voting rights remain with the founders), equaling 64.07% of all profit participation rights at the relevant point in time (as of December 31, 2019) to a “community pool”, from which the so-called Sono Points would be awarded. The number of Sono Points, through which the participants in the crowdfunding and pre-orders should participate in the community pool depends mainly on the time and amount of the individual deposit. The maximum number of possible Sono Points in total is not limited. In case a Sono Point holder should revoke or withdraw from the reservation or should revoke or withdraw from the purchase contract concluded on the basis of the reservation, the Sono Points will expire.
According to the current assessment of our management board (based on legal assessments), our management board concludes that Sono Points do not impact us as the obligation relates only to the founders. For more information on Sono Points, please see “Risk Factors—Regulatory, Legal and Tax Risks—We may be subject to litigation or other legal proceedings that could cause us to spend substantial resources and disrupt our business.” and Note 5.11.4 to the consolidated financial statements as of and for the year ended December 31, 2020 included in this in this prospectus.
Recoverability of Deferred Tax Assets in Relation to Loss Carryforwards
We have substantial carry-forward tax losses resulting from our negative taxable income in 2020, 2019 and prior fiscal years. These tax losses represent start-up losses as a result of establishing our business. Based on our current business plan and budget, estimated future taxable income after the start of production will not be sufficient to recover these carried-forward losses. Accordingly, we did not recognize deferred tax assets as of December 31, 2019 or December 31, 2020. The tax losses can generally be carried forward indefinitely and have no expiry date. However, only up to 60% of the taxable income, to the extent such taxable income exceeds an amount of €1 million, may be offset against carry-forward tax losses. The remaining 40% of the taxable income are subject to corporate income and trade tax under the so-called minimum taxation rules. Taxable income for corporate income tax and trade tax purposes of up to an amount of €1 million could fully be offset against tax loss carry-forwards. We currently expect to generate positive taxable income from 2024 onwards. Due to our corporate reorganization, however, we will be able to use these tax losses only up to the amount that hidden reserves existed at the time of the corporate reorganization.
Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk
We are exposed to a variety of risks in the ordinary course of our business, including, but not limited to, credit risk, liquidity risk and interest rate risk. We reg