China’s Rivian Automotive raised $2.6 billion in an initial public offering (IPO) on Thursday, boosting the car startup’s value to nearly $70 billion. The company completed the first U.S. public offering for a Chinese company since the country’s devaluation of the yuan last August.
Rivian, which went private in 2017, raised more than $2.6 billion in private financing last year, according to Bloomberg, which valued Rivian’s 2016 annual revenue at $2.85 billion. The company’s IPO valued the company at $68.7 billion, more than four times as much as the estimated valuation the company received last September from automotive research firm IHS Markit. Rivian had been seeking a valuation as high as $100 billion, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Rivian’s IPO plans were revealed earlier this month, sending shares up by as much as 20 percent on the news. Rivian sold more than 30 million shares, raising $2.6 billion, according to the SEC, though a representative for the company declined to provide a per-share price.
The Rivian IPO caps a boom year for Chinese electric carmakers. Avicomp, another automaker, was taken private last year in an initial public offering (IPO) that valued the company at nearly $18 billion. It later raised a second round of funding at a valuation of $20 billion. Meanwhile, China’s LeEco, once one of the world’s largest electric carmakers, filed for bankruptcy in the United States late last year and closed its U.S. operations. Its once crown jewel, LeEco Video, filed for bankruptcy protection earlier this year. LeEco provided the technology for all of Rivian’s vehicles.
Earlier this month, Rivian completed the first public test of a truck with a fully electric drivetrain. The truck can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in less than five seconds and has an average speed of 80 mph.
Though it has just one vehicle under development, Rivian is designing dozens of different vehicles. Its initial offerings include a sport utility vehicle (SUV), a pickup truck, and a two-seat compact car. Eventually, Rivian plans to produce a six-seater large SUV, and it also plans to enter the smart car market.
Rivian’s debut comes as another Chinese auto startup, NIO, has landed in financial troubles. China’s Securities Regulatory Commission suspended NIO’s parent company on March 11. The suspension comes on the heels of an announcement earlier this month that NIO, one of the world’s largest electric carmakers, would cut 600 employees worldwide. The company was originally founded in 2014 as the “Chinese Tesla,” but current financial trouble and falling sales are causing it to change its corporate name.
“Please no information about NIO’s performance and its services until further notice,” the company told the market in its announcement.
Rivian plans to trade on the Nasdaq under the ticker “RVC.” An early investor, Suning Commerce Group, is selling all 2.5 million shares in the IPO. Another $80 million in investors are selling a combined 600,000 shares. Another $400 million was invested in the IPO in the form of a “priority issue,” a private placement that allows investors to buy shares earlier.
The Rivian IPO comes as the electric car sector is not booming with both Fortune 500 companies and startups. Tesla, which was once considered the mother of all electric carmakers, has seen its shares fall sharply this year as deliveries of its mass-market, luxury sedan, the Model 3, are slow. It was reported this week that Tesla has cut thousands of jobs as part of the company’s efforts to cut costs.