EV maker Rivian boosts IPO price range, aims for $65 bln valuation

Rivian Automotive, which is backed by Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O), considerably increased the estimated offer price of its shares on Friday, aiming for a valuation of up to $65 billion in its initial public offering.

It had targeted a valuation of more than $53 billion at a price of $62 per share early this week. On Nov. 9, the business aims to sell 135 million shares in the $72-$74 range to raise almost $10 billion.

Rivian’s price band has been raised following a successful investor roadshow this week, with Wall Street’s largest IPO investors betting on the company to be the next big thing in a field dominated by Tesla (TSLA.O).

Rivian’s IPO could make it one of just three companies to raise more than $8 billion in the last decade, following Alibaba (9988. HK) and Facebook (FB.O).

While the startup has yet to sell any significant volume of its electric vans or trucks, a $65 billion valuation for Rivian could make it more valuable than Fiat maker Stellantis NV and bring it closer to legacy automakers Ford (F.N) and General Motors (GM.N).

Rivian has been investing heavily to ramp up production, including for its upscale all-electric R1T pickup truck which was launched in September, beating out competition from established rivals such as Tesla Inc, General Motors, and Ford.

The company had about 55,400 R1T and R1S preorders in the United States and Canada, as of Oct. 31.

Rivian said it had started deliveries of the R1T and had recorded revenue for the three months ended September 30. Net loss for that period, however, is estimated to increase due to higher production costs.

The electric vehicle market is increasing as buyers become more environmentally conscious, and many manufacturers consider it as a symbol of luxury. In the most recent quarter, Tesla manufactured a record number of automobiles, indicating high demand for electric vehicles.

Amazon has placed an order for 100,000 Rivian electric delivery vehicles as part of a larger drive to reduce its carbon footprint. Rivian, on the other hand, will be up against automakers in both the consumer and commercial van markets. Ford claimed its F-150 Lightning electric pickup truck has received more than 160,000 orders, and an electric version of its Transit commercial van is “totally sold out.”

Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, and J.P. Morgan are the lead underwriters. Rivian will list on the Nasdaq under the symbol “RIVN”. The valuation includes shares that underwriters could exercise under the “greenshoe” option.

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