Amazon-Backed Electric Vehicle Startup Rivian Eyes 2021 IPO

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Electric vehicle startup Rivian Automotive, which counts Amazon and Ford Motor Company among its investors, is eyeing the possibility of a September initial public offering (IPO) at a $50 billion valuation, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday (Feb. 10), citing sources.

Rivian has been in talks with lenders, one of the sources told Bloomberg. The possible filing could end up being after September or pushed out to 2022, one of the sources said.

A competitor to Tesla, Rivian was launched in 2009 by Robert J. Scaringe and has so far raised in excess of $8 billion. The company specializes in the manufacturing of electric pickup trucks and SUVs and has facilities in Michigan, California and Illinois. 

If the company files an IPO at a $50 billion valuation, it could end up among the largest filings of 2021. Tesla went public in 2010.

A  $2.65 billion funding round last month put the company’s valuation at $27.6 billion. The round was led by funds and accounts advised by T. Rowe Price, with participation from Fidelity Management and Research, Amazon’s Climate Pledge Fund, Coatue, D1 Capital Partners and other existing and new investors.

Aside from electric SUVs and pickup trucks, Rivian is using its skateboard platform to engineer 100,000 custom electric delivery vans for Amazon. 

The pickup R1T and the SUV R1S will be the company’s first vehicles and are being manufactured in its Normal, Illinois factory. Deliveries to customers are anticipated this summer.

Earlier this month, Amazon rolled out the first of its 100,000 Rivian electric delivery vans in Los Angeles as it continues working on its pledge to become net carbon zero by 2040. Amazon plans to expand the fleet to 15 other cities before 2021 is over. The all-electric vans can drive up to 150 miles on a single charge.

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