Businesshala News Exclusive | Rivian’s Chief Operating Officer Departed Amid Production Ramp-Up

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Electric-truck maker to produce over 1,000 vehicles in 2021, in line with its lower expectations

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Rod Koops retired from Rivian in December, the spokesman confirmed Monday. Mr Kopps’ retirement was planned for months, he said, and his duties have been absorbed by the leadership team. As of Monday afternoon, Mr Kopps was still identified on Rivian’s website as the company’s head of operations.

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Mr Coop could not be immediately reached for comment. Prior to joining the startup in June 2020, he was an executive at Royal Enfield Motorcycle Companies, a unit of India’s Eicher Motors. Ltd.

, and Harley-Davidson Inc.

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Shares of Rivian fell 5.6% to close at $81.44 on Monday amid a broader market sell-off. Shares were down 3.2% in after-hours trading by Businesshala after Mr Kopps left.

In November, Rivian raised $13.7 billion in the largest initial offering on a US exchange since 2014. The stock skyrocketed in its opening day of trading, hitting a high of $172.01 on its fifth day of trading after listing at $78. Its market valuation was higher than that of auto makers such as Ford Motor. Co.

and General Motors Co.

Since then the stock has been sliding steadily. Rivian chief executive and founder RJ Scaring told analysts on the company’s first earnings call that the downturn accelerated in December after the startup expected to miss its production targets.

The recent addition to the stock is adding pressure to legacy auto makers encroaching on Rivian’s core business lines. Last week, global auto maker Stelantis NV, which owns the Ram and Chrysler brands, said it has signed a deal to start supplying electric delivery vans to Amazon.com. Inc.

in 2023.

Amazon, which owns about 19% of Rivian, also has a deal to buy 100,000 vans from Rivian, which the startup says it expects to be completed by the end of 2025. Spokesmen for both Amazon and Rivian said their partnership remains intact and the two companies expect Amazon to source vehicles from multiple companies.

Other companies are close to bringing an electric pickup truck to market, winning the first-mover advantage of Rivian’s R1T pickup truck, which began sales in September and is the only electric pickup available in the US market. Ford plans to start selling an electric version of its F-150 pickup this spring, and GM last week revealed a new electric version of its Silverado pickup in 2023. Both Ford and GM’s valuations have surpassed those of the Rivian.

Write Ben Foldy at [email protected]

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