EV maker Rivian eclipses Volkswagen in value while Lucid overtakes Ford

The electric vehicle company Rivian overtook Volkswagen in market value on Tuesday, while rival start-up Lucid surpassed Ford, as shares in their largely unproven businesses continued to soar following their recent stock market listings.

The market capitalisation of Rivian, a pick-up truck and van group backed by Amazon and Ford, rose above VW, the world’s largest carmaker, after its stock increased 16 per cent to hit $173. Rivian’s value has doubled to $146bn since floating only last Wednesday.

VW generated €9.7bn in net profit last year and sold 9.3m cars globally. Rivian, founded in 2009, has no meaningful revenue.

Lucid, a luxury electric carmaker run by former Tesla executive Peter Rawlinson, rose more than 20 per cent on Tuesday after the company announced that orders for its first car had jumped to 17,000. The move gave the business a value of $76bn, more than Ford.

Lucid posted a loss of $524m in the third quarter, the company said on Monday night in its first stock market update since listing in the summer through a reverse merger.

For the same quarter, Ford reported adjusted earnings of $3bn, a drop of 17 per cent after sales were hit by the global chip shortage.

Rivian and Lucid are the first in a wave of electric vehicle start-ups expected to go public, testing whether they will be able to emulate the stock rise of EV pioneer Tesla, whose valuation soared to more than $1tn last month.

Jessica Caldwell, from data group Edmunds, said the valuations of the new companies were “questionable”. “Tesla has made many investors rich and now everyone wants in on the next big thing in the EV space,” she told the FT. “Unfortunately, a company like Tesla doesn’t come along very often and the valuations placed on Rivian and Lucid are questionable, particularly in comparison to the existing automotive companies.”

Dan Ives, an automotive and tech analyst at Wedbush, said investors have “a massive appetite for these EV stories, and Tesla surpassing $1tn market value has changed the valuation paradigm in the EV space.”

“Ford, GM and VW are still being treated by investors as auto names, while Lucid is being anointed the next mini Tesla,” he told the Financial Times.

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