Rivian raises another $2.5 billion as it looks to build a second factory

Electric vehicle startup Rivian has raised another massive round of funding, this time to the tune of $2.5 billion, bringing its total raised to date over the $10 billion mark. The funding round comes as Rivian recently confirmed it’s looking for a location to build a second factory — one that will also produce batteries for its vehicles — in the United States. The company is currently aiming to roll its first electric pickup trucks off the line at its existing factory in Illinois this September.

The new round was led by Amazon’s Climate Pledge Fund, Ford, D1 Capital Partners, and funds advised by T. Rowe Price, each of which are already investors in Rivian. Amazon and Ford each own more than 10 percent of the buzzy EV startup, and are working with Rivian on separate vehicles: Rivian is building delivery vans for Amazon, and is developing a vehicle with Ford.

Rivian was supposed to put its R1T electric pickup truck and R1S SUV into production in 2020, but delayed to 2021 after the pandemic hit. A targeted June start date for pickup production slipped to July, before getting delayed again until September. The SUV will now enter production sometime soon after that.

As if getting three vehicles into production (not including the one with Ford, which is still in development) at roughly the same time isn’t challenging or expensive enough, Rivian confirmed to Reuters this week that it’s scouting locations for a second assembly plant, where it plans to also make battery cells. Multiple states are bidding on the new plant, according to the report. The company now employs some 7,000 people. Rivian is also working on an initial public offering, according to multiple reports.

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