Amazon-Backed Rivian Raises Another $2.5bn From Investors

Rivian's R1S electric SUV. Image credit: Rivian

Electric vehicle start-up raises another $2.5bn from existing investors such as Amazon, as it looks to deliver first vehicles this year

Electric vehicle start-up Rivian has closed a further $2.5 billion (£1.8bn) funding round led by existing investors Amazon, Ford Motor and T. Rowe Price.

The firm brings the total raised by the firm, which has yet to deliver a vehicle, to about $10.5bn, following a $2.65bn round in January and a $2.5bn round in July 2020.

Rivian raised $1.3bn in December 2019 and at least $1.5bn before that.

“As we near the start of vehicle production, it’s vital that we keep looking forward and pushing through to Rivian’s next phase of growth,” Rivian chief executive RJ Scaringe said in a statement.

He added that the funding will go to expanding new vehicle programmes, domestic manufacturing facilities and international product rollouts.

Rivian's R1T electric pickup truck. Image credit: Rivian
Rivian’s R1T electric pickup truck. Image credit: Rivian

Second plant

Late last week Rivian said it would open a second manufacturing plant in the US, with multiple US states submitting bids for the plant, called Project Tera. The plant is reportedly intended to include battery cell production.

Rivian is planning to give details on the facility in the coming months and break ground early next year, Reuters reported, citing unnamed sources.

The company already operates a plant in Normal, Illinois where it is looking to manufacture an electric pickup truck and an SUV.

Earlier this month Rivian delayed deliveries of the R1T pickup from July to September and the R1S SUV until later in the autumn.

Public offering

Scaringe said the latest delays were due to pandemic-related issues ranging “from facility construction, to equipment installation, to vehicle component supply (especially semiconductors)”, he said in a letter to customers.

Rivian’s plans to deliver 100,000 electric delivery vehicles to Amazon haven’t been affected by the delays.

The September 2019 deal with Amazon is part of a plan to make the e-commerce firm’s fleet run entirely on renewable energy. Amazon hopes to test the vehicles in 16 cities by the end of this year.

Scavinge said last November that Rivian plans to follow up these initial three vehicles with smaller models for the Chinese and European markets, and may eventually build plants in those regions.

Rivian is reportedly planning a potential public listing later this year, for which it would target a valuation of well over $50bn.