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Amazon reveals 20% stake in Rivian ahead of EV maker’s IPO

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Amazon said on Friday that it holds a 20% investment in Rivian, an electric car company that filed for an initial public offering earlier this month.

According to the report, as of September 30, the e-commerce behemoth had equity stakes, including preferred shares in Rivian that represented around a 20% ownership position. As of December 31, 2020, that holding had a “carrying value” of $3.8 billion, up from $2.7 billion.

Amazon reveals 20% stake in Rivian ahead of EV maker’s IPO

The information, which was discovered in a regulatory filing, sheds new light on how intimately Rivian’s destiny is linked to Amazon. According to Rivian’s first public offering, Amazon has invested $1.345 billion in the electric vehicle manufacturer.

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Amazon also recently purchased $490 million worth of convertible notes in Rivian that will convert to Class A shares after the IPO, pursuant to certain pricing provisions.

Amazon is a customer as well as an investor in Rivian. Rivian and Amazon signed a deal in September 2019 to construct 100,000 electric delivery trucks. Rivian said earlier this month that it anticipates delivering at least 10 vehicles in December 2021. By 2025, all of the vehicles (the remaining 99,990) will have been delivered.

Rivian’s first public offering filing made it apparent that Amazon was an important component of the company’s universe. For example, Amazon is mentioned 81 times in the Rivian S-1 filing, which is a large amount given Amazon’s dual role as an investor and a client.

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At the time, it appeared like Amazon owned at least 5% of Rivian, while the exact percentage remained unknown. Amazon’s declaration reveals that their interest is much greater.

As TechCrunch has reported, the company’s close ties to Amazon are both a benefit and a liability. According to the risk-factor portion of Rivian’s S-1:

Rivian announced it aims to list on the Nasdaq under the ticker code “RIVN” after filing its IPO prospectus on Oct. 1. The filing offered additional information about how tightly Rivian and Amazon are linked. Rivian is planning an initial public offering (IPO) in November.

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Amazon has exclusive rights to Rivian’s electric delivery cars for at least four years, with the right of first refusal beyond that, according to Rivian. By 2030, Amazon has placed an order for 100,000 automobiles. Rivian expects to have 10,000 new electric delivery vans on the road by the end of next year.

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