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Elon Musk Responds to Tesla Competitor's Stellar IPO

Electric vehicle automaker Rivian achieved a market cap that makes it more valuable than the legacy automakers Ford and General Motors.

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On Wednesday, electric vehicle automaker Rivian debuted on the stock market with a market cap of more than $100 billion.

Bloomberg | Getty Images

Naturally, people turned to Twitter for Elon Musk's perspective on the blockbuster IPO. One user compared Tesla's IPO to Rivian's tweeting, "When $TSLA IPOed at a value of $1.7 billion they had been selling Roadster for 2 years & had stunned the world with Model S reveal the year before. No criticism of Rivian, but 24 hours into IPO MC is $100B with zero revenue. A sign of the times @elonmusk?"

Musk responded by pointing out that Tesla has been the only carmaker to reach high-volume production and positive cash flow in the last century.

Related: Elon Musk's Fortune Drops $50 Billion in Two Days

Rivian raised around $12 billion in its IPO, setting the record for this year's largest initial public offering in the world. Rivian is now the second most valuable U.S. car manufacturer after Tesla.

This IPO makes the company even more valuable than Ford (market cap $77 billion) and General Motors (market cap $90 billion). Rivian CEO R.J. Scaringe wrote about taking on the car industry in Rivian's IPO prospectus.

“We began thinking about the truck, SUV, and crossover segments as they presented a massive opportunity for us to demonstrate how a clean sheet, technology-focused vehicle could eliminate long accepted compromises,” Scaringe wrote. "We wanted to establish our brand by delivering a combination of efficiency, on-road performance, off-road capability, functional utility, and product refinement that simply didn’t exist in the market."

Despite never recording revenue, the company says it has 55,400 preorders for its R1S SUV and R1T pickup truck and a contract to build 100,000 electric vans with Amazon by 2030. 

Rivian's IPO is a much different picture than when Tesla went public in 2010. At that time, Musk's company had already been selling its Roadster model for two years with plans to roll out the Model S. On the other hand, Rivian just started selling its vehicles and has reported a net loss of almost $1 billion in the first half of 2021.

Related: Elon Musk Says Tesla, Unlike Apple, Won't 'Bludgeon Competitors'