Rivian raises $2.5bn in new funding led by Amazon and Ford

26 Jul 2021

The Rivian R1T and R1S. Image: Rivian.

The EV start-up has now raised more than $10.5bn in two years and employs 7,000 people, but has yet to deliver its vehicles.

Electric vehicle maker Rivian closed a $2.5bn funding round last week, bringing its total raised since 2019 to $10.5bn.

The funding round was led by Amazon’s Climate Pledge Fund, D1 Capital Partners, funds advised by T Rowe Price Associates, and the Ford Motor Company – all of which have previously invested in Rivian. Other participants in the round included Fidelity Management and Research Co, Coatue, Dragoneer Investment Group and Third Point.

This capital injection follows a $2.5bn funding round in July 2020 and a $2.65bn round in January of this year, which brought the company’s value to $27.6bn, according to TechCrunch. Rivian did not reveal a valuation after this latest round of funding. In May, Bloomberg reported that the company was beginning preparations for a potential IPO later this year.

The EV company now employs approximately 7,000 people, and last week confirmed plans to open a second US factory where it will manufacture batteries. Its existing facility is located in Illinois, and the company is investigating potential locations in several states for the expansion.

Rivian has not yet begun deliveries of its vehicles, having initially planned to release its R1T pickup truck and R1S SUV in 2020 but being forced by the pandemic to push that back to 2021. This was then further delayed to July, and most recently to September.

Both Ford and Amazon each own more than 10pc of the company. The latter agreed in 2019 to purchase 100,000 Rivian electric vans and has trialled prototype vans for deliveries in the US.

This is just one of a number of new delivery methods the e-commerce giant has been exploring recently, having also begun working with autonomous vehicle start-up Plus and opening a centre in Helsinki to develop delivery robots.

“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,” RJ Scaringe, CEO of Rivian, commented. “This infusion of funds from trusted partners allows Rivian to scale new vehicle programs, expand our domestic facility footprint, and fuel international product roll-out.”

Dan Sundheim, founder of D1 Capital Partners, added: “We are excited to increase our investment in Rivian as it reaches an inflection point in its commercialisation and delivers what we believe will be exceptional products for customers.”

Jack Kennedy is a freelance journalist based in Dublin