Rivian rockets past GM to become 2nd most valuable carmaker

National

FILE – This Nov. 14, 2018 photo shows a Rivian R1T at Rivian headquarters in Plymouth, Mich. Rivian Automotive, a company that went public a day ago and hopes to produce 1,000 electric vehicles by the end of the year, will surpass General Motors to become the nation’s second most valuable automaker if an overnight surge in the price of its shares hold. The California company’s market valuation exceeded Ford’s in its first day of trading Wednesday and with shares up 6% before the opening bell Thursday, Nov. 11, 2021 that valuation hit $90 billion to surpass GM, a company that sold more than 2.5 million vehicles last year. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, file)

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Rivian Automotive, a company that has delivered about 150 electric pickup trucks, mostly to employees, has surpassed General Motors to become the nation’s second most valuable automaker.

The California company’s market valuation exceeded Ford’s in its first day as a public company Wednesday rising as much as 53% as investors look for the next big winner in the electric vehicle market.

Its shares rose 10% at the opening bell Thursday pushing its valuation to over $90 billion — that’s greater than Detroit’s GM, one of the biggest auto manufacturers in the world, which sold more than 2.5 million vehicles last year.

Rivian is aiming to take advantage of a growing appetite among consumers and investors for electric vehicles. It joins what’s becoming a long line of companies, both new and old, trying to peel away market share from the electric vehicle giant, Tesla.

Research firm LMC Automotive says in 2020, EVs made up a little more than 3% of the global auto market and less than 2% of the U.S. auto market, leaving plenty of opportunity and growth for electric vehicle manufacturers. The group projected those numbers could shoot up to about 15% and 12% respectively by 2025.

As of Oct. 31, Rivian had about 55,400 vehicle preorders in the U.S. and Canada alone. Those orders were placed with a $1,000 deposit that can be canceled and refunded.

The company said it aims to produce about 1,200 R1Ts and 25 R1Ss and deliver around 1,000 R1Ts and 15 R1Ss by the end of 2021.

Helping Rivian reach those goals are Ford and Amazon, two high-profile backers that held a substantial stake in the company before its initial public offering.

Rivian has a contract with Amazon to build 100,000 electric delivery vans at its factory, a former Mitsubishi plant in Normal, Illinois. Ford Motor Co. holds a 13% stake and has said the companies would work jointly to develop electric vehicles.

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