Shares of Rivian jumped after the US electric vehicle maker stuck to production and financial targets for the year, in contrast with gloomier forecasts from rival start-ups.
The California-based company on Tuesday reaffirmed plans to make 50,000 of its battery-powered trucks, SUVs and delivery vans this year and expectations of an adjusted loss before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation of $4.3bn. The stock rose 6 per cent in after-hours trading.
Chief executive RJ Scaringe said while the company had “a lot of work to do” to boost production and reduce costs, “we’re looking forward to continuing to show progress quarter over quarter as we work toward, not only profitability, but significantly higher volumes”.
Rivian’s guidance came after a host of other EV start-ups have cut their production forecasts or warned about cash burn and the possibility of bankruptcy.
Fisker on Tuesday lowered its vehicle production forecast for the year from 42,000 vehicles to a range of 32,000 to 36,000. EV manufacturer Nikola said its cash burn — $240mn in the first quarter — was “not sustainable”.
Lucid, which makes luxury electric cars, on Monday reduced production guidance from 14,000 to 10,000 vehicles, saying worries about the wider economy coupled with higher interest rates were forcing the company to reduce output to match deliveries. Last week Lordstown Motors warned that it may go bankrupt and stop manufacturing its flagship pick-up truck, the Endurance.
All of the start-ups have struggled as supply chain problems delayed production, interest rates have risen and traditional carmakers have begun to offer more electric models.
Rivian has not been spared, saying it expects the supply chain problems that have hampered production at its factory in Normal, Illinois to “continue to be the main limiting factor” for the plant’s output. “New engineering design changes and key technologies” were aimed at mitigating such constraints in the second half of 2023, Rivian said.
Still, the company reported a smaller loss in the first quarter than investors expected, posting a gross loss of $535mn compared to an expected gross loss of $752mn. It reported a gross loss of $502mn for the same period a year ago.
Rivian took in $661mn in first-quarter revenue — beating estimates of $652mn — as it delivered 7,946 vehicles.
It also shored up its balance sheet in March by issuing convertible bonds worth $1.5bn. It ended the quarter with $11.2bn in cash and cash equivalents, down from $11.6bn in December.
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