Amazon has ordered 100,000 vans, but Rivian is afraid to say how many it has shipped. On Wednesday, it just said it was “stepping up production and deliveries.” Speaking with analysts, Mr Scaringe said he expected the vans would make up about a third of the 25,000 vehicles in the 2022 production forecast.
In many ways, Rivian embodies the sharp shift towards bearishness in the stock market this year.
In November, investors plunged into the IPO, raising $13.5 billion, and its shares then skyrocketed, briefly giving Rivian a market capitalization nearly as big as Ford Motor and General Motors combined.
But the stock plummeted this year after the company slashed its production targets. The 80 percent drop in Rivian’s stock is much stronger than a 31 percent drop in Tesla stock over the same period and a 38 percent drop for Ford, which is introducing its own electric truck.
Rivian makes vehicles in Normal, Illinois, and plans another plant in Georgia. Building and running assembly lines requires huge amounts of cash, which is why new car companies can find themselves in serious financial trouble if production falls and sales fall short. Even Tesla, which sells more electric cars than any other company, was sometimes short of money.
In the first quarter, Rivian used $1.45 billion in cash to run its business and invest in new facilities and equipment, far more than the $800 million it consumed in the first quarter of 2021. the end of the first quarter, down from $18.1 billion late last year.
The decline in Rivian’s shares caused the value of the interests of the largest shareholders to fall. Amazon’s 18 percent stake is worth $3.2 billion, up from $16.8 billion at the start of the year. Ford, another early investor, sold some of its shares on Monday, with the remaining stake worth $1.9 billion. At the end of last year, it would have been worth $9.7 billion.
Rivian said it had received more than 10,000 orders for its truck and its SUV after raising prices in March. Those orders had an average price of more than $93,000, the company added.
But because Rivian’s vehicles sell for relatively high prices, analysts wondered how much demand there would be if inflation continued to erode household purchasing power. “It remains to be seen how much appetite consumers have for a Rivian price tag,” said Mr Nelson.