Credit: EV

NIO CEO visits San Francisco looking for potential spaces ahead of the first U.S. NIO House

Written by Cláudio Afonso | | LinkedIn | Twitter

A few days ago, NIO CEO William Li was seen in San Francisco with NIO’s Head of Real Estate in the United States, Scott Lifschultz, visiting multi-story buildings in view of the first NIO House in the United States.

Last week, Li visited NIO’s U.S. headquarters in the heart of Silicon Valley where the company has its R&D center for autonomous driving. 

The photo was taken on Wednesday (August 17) at 48 Stockton St., San Francisco (CA) which is less than one mile away from the city’s Chinatown area and a very high exposure area in a luxury retail environment.

In the photo, NIO CEO is accompanied (from left to right) by an employee, the contractor lead for the renovation, the realtor, Scott Lifschultz (NIO’s Head of Real Estate in the U.S.) and Li’s assistant.


According to San Francisco Permit Data, the premier real estate private equity firm Strada is the currently master lease holder of the building. According to the company’s website, the San Francisco based firm is “devoted exclusively to investment, development and advisory services”.

The building is very close to Chinatown with the Chinese community being the largest Asian ethnic group in the city representing over 20% of the San Francisco’s population, according to estimates from the 2015-19 American Community Survey

On July 19, EV reported that NIO had posted the first job vacancies amid the expansion of its showrooms to the U.S. market.

Four weeks ago, the EV maker started hiring a Senior Real Estate manager to be responsible for the “site selection and negotiation of lease terms for new locations” and a Head of Construction to “drive the construction and development strategy of NIO Houses”.

As reported by EV last week, NIO Inc. plans to enter the U.S. market in 2025 and deploy the first Battery Swap Station in the country this November.

In addition, NIO leased a new area behind its current headquarters in San Jose (California), where it will install in November the first Battery Swap Station for testing purposes.

The company has currently 4 NIO ES8 models used for road testing in San Jose although NIO NAD (NIO Autonomous Driving) is still not working in the country.

During the last NIO Day, held in December 2021, the company said it plans to be in over 25 countries and regions by 2025. The map displayed during the presentation includes countries such as the United States, Australia, France, and Japan, leaving out countries such as Canada and Brazil.


Earlier this year, Colliers reported that NIO leased a new building with 201,500 square-foot until January 2032 to support research and digital development, testing, assembly, warehousing and also operations. In the deal, the EV maker was represented by Toomey, Jere Hench, John McMahon, and Sean McMahon.

After entering Europe through Norway in September 2021, the company is very close to arriving in Germany, Denmark, Sweden, and The Netherlands. For 2023, as EV reported on July 13, NIO is planning to enter 9 European markets including Austria, Belgium, France, Hungary, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, Portugal, and the Czech Republic.

On Thursday, a video leaked on the internet showed over one hundred units of NIO ET7 units at the Shanghai Port waiting to be batched to Europe, amid the company’s expansion in the upcoming months.

Written by Cláudio Afonso | | LinkedIn | Twitter