Electric Truck Maker Rivian Files for IPO, Aiming for an $80 Billion Valuation
【Summary】Electric truck maker Rivian, a company backed by e-commerce giant Amazon and Ford Motor Co., has filed paperwork for an IPO, in one of the most anticipated Wall Street debuts in the auto industry since Tesla went public in June 2010.
Electric truck maker Rivian, a company backed by e-commerce giant Amazon, has filed paperwork for an IPO, in one of the most anticipated Wall Street debuts in the auto industry since Tesla went public in June 2010.
The company is aiming for a $80 billion valuation, according to people familiar with the matter.
As reported by Bloomberg, Rivian said in a statement Friday that it submitted its S-1 registration to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), confirming an earnings report by Bloomberg News.
Rivian would like to launch its high-profile IPO around the Nov. 25 Thanksgiving holiday, however the timing will ultimately depend on approval from the SEC.
Unlike many other tech companies in the mobility space launching IPO's in reverse merger deals with special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs), Rivian is seeking a traditional IPO.
Rivian's Massive Funding
Rivian is one of the most well-funded electric vehicle startups and its IPO will be closely watched by investors. The company has raised around $10.5 billion from backers so far, including Amazon and Ford Motor Co. In April 2020, Rivian announced a $500 million investment from Ford.
In January, Rivian announced that it closed on a $2.65 billion investment round led by T. Rowe Price.
Amazon invested in Rivian through its new $2 billion venture capital fund that invests in companies developing "sustainable and decarbonizing technologies", which is exactly the type of company Rivian is.
Rivian is building custom electric delivery vans for Amazon. The e-commerce giant ordered 100,000 of them from Rivian.
With the exception of Tesla and Lucid Motors, Rivian is also one of only a few electric vehicle startups with its own auto factory. Rivian purchased a shuttered Mitsubishi Motors auto plant in Normal, Illinois in 2016 for the bargain price of $16 million. Mitsubishi Motors closed its plant in 2015 and put the factory up for sale when its ceased manufacturing vehicles in the U.S.
Rivians's first vehicle is the rugged, R1T pickup truck. The first deliveries are scheduled to begin this fall. Rivian will follow up the R1T with a companion SUV called the R1S. Rivian is marketing its two EVs as "adventure vehicles" that owners can take off-road, if desired.
According to its design and specifications, Rivian's R1T pickup might just be one of the most practical and versatile pickup trucks ever made. The electric R1T Performance model for example, gets a quad-motor setup, which produces 750 horsepower and 823 lb-ft of torque.
Rivian is also going to introduce a long-range model in which the power output would be reduced to 700 horsepower to extend the range. Right now, there is not even a single pickup truck on the market which can come close to these impressive performance figures.
Rivian is also building a charging network that will include dozens of sites located in and around popular outdoor adventure destinations and national parks, including hiking and mountain bike trails and kayaking spots.
The fully-electric Rivian R1S SUV.
But even though Rivian has secured billions of dollars of funding and is launching a traditional IPO, the EV startup faces an uphill battle to lure buyers away from gas-powered trucks and SUVs from U.S. automakers Ford and GM. But the company could become highly successful if its does.
Rivian is entering into a truck and SUV market that is the most profitable segment for U.S. automakers General Motors and Ford Motor Co. But GM and Ford are not sitting back and letting companies like Rivian and Tesla move into the highly profitable truck market unchallenged.
GM will launch the much hyped Hummer EV next year, its first fully-electric truck. It will follow that up with an electric Silverado pickup. Ford recently unveiled the F-150 Lightning, a battery-powered version of the most popular pickup truck in the U.S.
But owning a former auto factory and a lucrative contract with Amazon gives Rivian a big advantage, especially for fully-electric commercial vehicles.
Rivian's upcoming IPO is gearing up to be one of the biggest in recent years.
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