Rivian confirms new $5 billion U.S. plant as EV reservations jump 28% to 71,000

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RJ Scaringe and team on opening day at Rivian’s manufacturing campus in Normal, IL.

Source: Rivian

Rivian Automotive confirmed plans Thursday to build a new vehicle assembly plant in Georgia, as the company begins production of a second electric vehicle at its current facility in Illinois.

Both are notable milestones for Rivian, which also reported its first quarterly results as a public company after market close. The company said reservations for its electric R1T pickup and R1S SUV increased to 71,000, up 28% compared with the most recent tally of 55,400 vehicles in November.

The company’s quarterly results fell in line with estimates the company previously released as part of its recent IPO.

For the third quarter, Rivian reported an operational loss of $776 million and a net loss of $1.23 billion. The company had previously predicted an operational loss between $745 million and $795 million and a net loss between $1.21 billion and $1.28 billion.

The company posted a loss per share of $12.21 on revenue of about $1 million.

Wall Street analysts expected the company to report a $5.52 earnings per share loss on revenue of $1 million, according to a handful of estimates compiled by Refinitiv. CNBC does not compare reported EPS to Wall Street analysts for a company’s first report since going public because of uncertainty around share counts.

Rivian’s stock closed Thursday at $108.87 a share, down by 5.3% ahead of the announcements. Shares slipped 3% during afterhours trading.

The new battery and assembly plant, details of which were recently reported in the media, will be east of Atlanta. It’s projected to cost $5 billion and employ 7,500 workers.

Rivian, whose stakeholders include Amazon and Ford Motor, went public through a blockbuster IPO in November. It was the first automaker to go to market with an all-electric pickup truck called the R1T.

Wall Street analysts have set a high bar for Rivian, comparing CEO RJ Scaringe to Superman and saying the company’s “the one” capable of challenging EV leader Tesla.

Rivian is still a growth story, though. It expects capital expenditures of about $8 billion through 2023, with some analysts such as BofA Securities’ John Murphy forecasting Rivian won’t turn an operating profit until at least 2025.

This is breaking news. Please check back for updates.

— CNBC’s Michael Bloom contributed to this report.

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