Rivian’s Losses Mount as It Continues to Burn Through Cash

The Irvine, Calif.-based company also said. but it is pushing back the launch of the cheaper model, called R2, by a year to 2026. Rivian chief executive RJ Scaringe said the date change was to ensure there was enough time to prepare. for production in the new factory.

Rivian’s third-quarter revenue was about $536 million, reflecting increased production at its plant in Normal, Ill., and higher deliveries to customers. The company’s net loss per share of $1.57 beat analysts’ expectations of a loss of $1.79 per share, according to Factset. Rivian shares rose about 7% in after-market trading.

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The maker of battery-powered trucks and sports cars earlier said it produced 7,363 vehicles during the three months and delivered 6,584 vehicles to customers during the same period. This means that Rivian will have to produce just over 10,000 vehicles to meet its production target of 25,000 for the entire year.

Rivian has confirmed that it is on track to beat that target, a figure it has lowered after experiencing production problems at its plant.

However, the company continues to burn through cash flow as it both spends heavily on expanding operations and faces inflationary pressures that drive up the cost of equipment and parts.

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At the end of September, it had $ 13.8 billion in cash and cash equivalents, compared to $ 15.46 billion reported at the end of June.

Mr. Scaringe, the CEO of the company, said that he believes that Rivian has a strong financial position and has enough cash to operate its business until 2025, excluding the costs of a planned partnership with the Mercedes-Benz Group. AG

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Rivian said in September it was considering a partnership with Mercedes-Benz to set up a new European plant, which would build vans for both companies.

“We have a strong balance sheet with $14 billion in cash that gives us the ability to navigate these uncertain economic times and find efficient ways to capitalize to drive growth,” said Mr. Scaringe.

The results come at an important time for the young automaker, as it seeks to prove it can make cars at scale in a tough financial environment.

Electric car startups like Rivian, Lucid, Fisker, Canoo and Lordstown need to adjust to the reality of making cars in a tough economy. The WSJ’s George Downs explains some of the challenges they face and why some are at risk of going out of business. Photo composite: George Downs

Rivian stands out among the few EV startups to go public in recent years with high valuations and a desire to shake up car orders. Since then, the market’s sentiment towards the newcomers has been subdued.

Rivian’s shares are down nearly 73% for the year, and the company recently laid off 6% of its workforce and cut costs in an attempt to save money.

The truck and SUV maker said its quarterly loss was due in part to building small cars on assembly lines that are designed for higher productivity. It also booked higher operating expenses for the quarter, mainly because of stock-based compensation expense, including one that was not recognized before the initial public offering in November.

The company recently added a second evening shift to its business, which will help it meet year-end targets, Mr Scaringe said. He added that Rivian had to stop production for five days in the current quarter because parts from suppliers did not arrive, but the problem has been resolved.

Claire McDonough, Rivian’s chief financial officer, said that the loss on each vehicle was significantly lower in the third quarter compared to the previous one. He said higher production volumes, higher vehicle prices and planned equipment cost reductions will help offset losses.

Other EV startups have also experienced production problems, forcing them to raise additional capital to keep operations going.

Lucid Group Inc. said Tuesday that it planned to raise up to $1.5 billion through two sales. The maker of the luxury EV has cut production targets twice this year after running into problems at its Arizona plant.

Earlier this year, Rivian recalled nearly all of its vehicles after it found faulty fasteners installed in some trucks and SUVs. In extreme cases, the loose fitting can separate the tire from the vehicle, the company said.

The maker of the R1T pickup truck and R1S SUV has raised the price of its cheapest vehicle by thousands of dollars in response to rising raw material costs. Other automakers have made similar price increases, citing higher costs for spare parts and inputs for batteries.

Rivian still has expansion plans, including a $5 billion plant in Georgia that will allow it to produce an additional 400,000 vehicles a year, including a more affordable model, called the R2.

Rivian said on Wednesday that it was working with Georgia authorities on the company’s plans and expected R2 to start in 2026.

Write to Sean McLain at [email protected]

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