Amazon-backed electric vehicle start-up Rivian Automotive has reportedly selected underwriters for an initial public offering (IPO) that could come some time this year, and which could see an initial value of about $US70 billion ($A90 billion).
The Michigan-based EV maker – only days after it shaved $US2,000 off the price of its R1T electric utility vehicle, while having to push back the vehicle’s delivery date – has reportedly selected underwriters for its anticipated IPO, according to sources quoted by Bloomberg News.
Bloomberg named the underwriters as Goldman Sachs , JPMorgan Chase & Co., and Morgan Stanley.
What has caught most by surprise, however, is Bloomberg’s reporting suggesting that Rivian could seek a value of as much as $US70 billion – well above the previously reported $US50 billion cited earlier this year.
One of several genuine Tesla competitors – though currently focusing solely on electric adventure vehicles including a ute and an SUV – Rivian’s desire to seek a value of $70 billion would be a remarkable achievement if they can pull it off.
For comparison, when Elon Musk briefly toyed with the idea of taking Tesla private at a price of $420 per share, that would have resulted in a valuation for the company of $71 billion.
By that time Tesla had already released its first vehicle – the Model S – and was rolling out the Model X, Model 3, and Model Y.
Rivian, on the other hand, was only founded in 2009 and has yet to deliver any commercially available vehicles – with last week’s announcement pushing deliveries into July and being completed by the first half of 2022.
Moreover, Rivian was said to be worth $US27.6 billion when it announced in January that it had raised $US2.65 billion from backers including T. Rowe Price Group Inc., Fidelity Investments, and Amazon.
That being said, in February, US online retail giant Amazon announced that it had begun using delivery vans made by Rivian. The electric delivery vans were the first of a massive 100,000-unit order Amazon made in 2019.
Amazon has been involved in several Rivian investments, including leading a $US700 million ($A920 million) investment round in 2019, and in 2020 investing again in the company as part of Amazon’s giant $2 billion Climate Pledge Initiative.
Bloomberg News was quick to point out that there has been no final decision on a potential public listing for Rivian and that the reported details could change.