Rivian Automotive Inc. is growing very fast, even if the “influential” electric vehicle maker’s stock has not reflected that growth.
The newly public California-based company
disclosed in its 2021 annual report filed Thursday that it had 10,422 employees as of Dec. 31.
That might pale in comparison to EV leader Tesla Inc.
at 99,290, to Ford Motor Co.
at 183,000 and to General Motors Co.
at 157,000. But Rivian’s workforce more than tripled last year, while Tesla’s grew by about 40%, Ford’s fell nearly 2% and GM’s inched up a little over 1%.
Armed with a war chest of nearly $12 billion from its initial public offering in November 2021, and backed by heavyweights like Ford and Amazon.com Inc.
Rivian’s workforce has climbed rapidly. It was 6,274 as of June 30, 2021 and 3,178 as of Dec. 31, 2020. At the end of 2019, the company had 1,277 employees.
Meanwhile, the company delivered a total of 920 EVs in 2021, with nearly all of those — 909 — delivered in the fourth quarter.
That growth came at a price. Rivian’s stock has underperformed the shares of rival companies by a wide margin.
It dropped 3.4% to close Thursday at $50.24. Although the stock closed 40.2% above its March 14 lowest-ever close of $35.83, it had still plunged 51.6% year to date, was 35.6% below its IPO price of $78, and had plunged 70.8% from its Nov. 16 record close of $172.01.
In comparison, Tesla’s stock has gained 2.0% year to date, Ford’s was down 18.6% and GM’s had lost 25.4%. The S&P 500 index
has slipped 5.0% this year.
But as Wall Street has struggled to embrace Rivian since it went public, Main Street has remained enamored of the company, which said its mission is to “Keep the World Adventurous Forever.”
Time magazine published on Wednesday its list of the world’s 100 most influential companies, and Rivian and its “electric dreams” topped the section titled “Innovators.”
Ford and Amazon also made the list, but Tesla and GM were left off. Other EV-related companies that made Time’s list were EV-charging services companies BYD Co. Ltd.
based in China and privately held EV Connect Inc. based in California, as well as privately held Kenya-based EV powertrains and electric motorcycles company Opibus.