In a year where exits of other private firms have been coming back down to earth, Rivian’s quiet IPO is very welcome.
Rivian Automotive has made a bullish IPO debut, soaring 45 percent during its first trading day as a public company. After a quiet IPO at $15 per share, the electric truck and coach company is now up to $19. The shares had also risen by more than a dollar during the day.
The firm is based in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Over the past six years, Rivian, formerly known as Rivian Motors, has developed a truly amazing-looking electric truck, which won a prestigious design award at CES.
The company isn’t profitable. However, it is now trading at very high valuations. In a market that’s traditionally discounted the growth prospects of young technology firms, Rivian had priced its IPO at the middle of the price range and attracted a lot of attention.
Rivian’s storied six-year history seemed to suggest that the company would hit the reset button. It was a major financial setback for the company at the end of the 2017. It had a failure to secure financing and the automaker was looking to raise money from its backer, Indiana-based electric bus company Wabash National.
Rivian had become a big name as it explored electric truck development. The company even considered a trademark application for a name reminiscent of its automotive model, the Rivian Cosworth 400×70T.
However, Rivian wasn’t able to raise the money. The firm closed its brokerage office in Chicago, with roughly 120 employees, and some employees were taken back to Indiana. The company raised about $217 million in its IPO.
Rivian, which is based in Fort Wayne, Ind., is developing a range of electric cars and electric commercial vehicles. It also plans to manufacture them in a $600 million factory set to open near Huntington. The factory should create some 400 jobs.
However, Rivian wasn’t profitable when it went public. Rivian was initially hoping to close its listings at just under $20, Bloomberg reported. The IPO raised $192 million, of which $154 million went into the coffers of the company.
Rivian is available for lease in Detroit, Michigan, and in Huntington, Indiana. Ford Motor Company is taking orders for some Rivian trucks, one source familiar with the matter told Bloomberg. Ford Automotive is working with Rivian to make, test and market electric Class 8 trucks in North America, something that it plans to start doing in 2020.
Some Wall Street analysts believe that Rivian is great and that it could become an early market leader with new electric trucks. At some point in the future, Rivian could even become the future of Detroit.