EV startup Rivian has raised $2.5 billion, bringing its total funding to date to around $6 billion ahead of the launch of its all-electric pickup truck and SUV in early 2021. $5.35 billion of that has come in the last year and a half alone, with Rivian scooping up big investments from Ford, Amazon, and Cox Automotive in 2019.
The new funding comes from Soros Fund Management LLC, Coatue (a hedge fund), Fidelity Management and Research Company, and investment firm Baron Capital Group. Amazon and another previous investor, BlackRock, also participated in the funding round, which was advised by T. Rowe Price.
The huge influx of money helps further establish Rivian’s position as what is likely the most well-capitalized EV startup in the world. It will also bolster the company’s massive growth, as it has already opened up a half-dozen offices in and outside of the US and hired around 2,400 people.
Rivian was founded in 2009 and originally set out to build a Tesla Roadster-style sports car, but ultimately pivoted to designing an electric pickup truck and SUV. It stayed extremely quiet for nearly a decade, only emerging from stealth mode in mid-2018 ahead of the launch of its first two vehicles, the R1T (the pickup) and the R1S (the SUV), at that year’s LA Auto Show.
The startup has grown rapidly since then. And not only has it taken in an incredible amount of money, but some of those deals are strategic, too. Rivian is working with Ford on developing an electric vehicle for its Lincoln brand (though one project was already scrapped due to the coronavirus pandemic), and it is building a massive fleet of electric delivery vans for Amazon.