Rivian, the electric vehicle startup backed by Alibaba co-founder Jack Ma, is beginning to trade on the New York Stock Exchange. At $21.00 per share, the IPO pricing values the company at $69.8 billion, making it one of the biggest IPOs to debut in the U.S. since Facebook.
“This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for us and we’re thrilled to begin the journey with so many new friends and colleagues on NYSE. As the race to dominate autonomous driving continues, we’re bringing the first truly practical, affordable, and beautiful zero emission sports car into the market— Rivian’s R1T—that will bring the electricity and value of autonomous technology to the masses,” said Rivian CEO and co-founder Travis Kalanick.
Rivian, whose capital and equity portfolio now exceeds $7 billion, has received a range of funding from investors including Alibaba (by way of its 30 percent equity ownership stake), Goldman Sachs (25 percent), Ashmore Group (25 percent), USA Ventures (20 percent), and Alta Motors, the same firm that produced Rivian’s electric two-seater at a base cost of $76,000.
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The company aims to bring the first electric car, dubbed the R1T, to market in 2020, at a suggested retail price of around $60,000, making it more affordable than most luxury cars. The company claims that half of the R1T’s battery pack can be recharged in two hours, enabling consumers to drive over 500 miles after just one charging stop.
However, current battery technology is at least two years away from achieving the company’s targeted range, making the R1T one of the more expensive battery-electric cars on the market. Rivian will also likely have to compete with Tesla, for example, which began building its Model 3 for the mass market in July last year.
Rivian revealed its first electric concept car, dubbed the R1T, at the Los Angeles Auto Show in 2017, and although the company has only teased its design, the two-seater boasts electric motors that produce a combined 780 horsepower and 1218 lb-ft of torque, allowing it to hit 100 miles per hour in 4.2 seconds. A range of “at least” 215 miles with a top speed of “above” 130 miles per hour.