According to the quarter ending (December 31st) securities filings, billionaire investor and philanthropist George Soros bought nearly 20 million shares of electric truck startup Rivian Automotive Inc.
Irvine, California-based EV startup Rivian was founded by Robert ‘RJ’ Scaringe in 2009 and in the last twelve years, the company’s valuation has risen up to more than $140 billion, just ahead of Volkswagen ($139 billion). This is in spite of the fact that the startup has generated no revenue yet.
According to various news sources, the 19,835,761 shares, worth about $2 billion at the time, makes Soros Fund Management among the most important investors in a company that has yet to produce a consumer vehicle.
Interestingly, its stock keeps climbing as Wall Street envisions a future in which all-electric vehicles are the norm. Under President Joe Biden's $1.2 trillion infrastructure plan, signed into law Monday, about $7.5 billion is being set aside to build a nationwide network of plug-in electric vehicle chargers.
Rivian also boasts a potential edge over Tesla in the US market, in part because it's angling for the non-Tesla, or even anti-Tesla, crowd. According to Edmunds research, Rivian's primary product is not just any EV — it's a pickup truck. That's important in the US market, given that the top three most popular vehicles in the US are the Ford F-150, the Chevy Silverado and the Ram, in that order.
Last week, shares of Rivian fell 9 per cent and are down 43 per cent for the year to date. The stock price is down 67 per cent from the high of $179.46 it touched on Nov. 16, less than a week after it raised $12 billion in the largest stock debut of 2021.
It would be interesting to what plans George Soros may have for the startup as he and Jeff Bezos partner in to usher the age of electric vehicles rivaling Tesla’s.