Saudi's PIF invests more than $ 1b in EV maker Lucid Motors

The Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia said Monday that it had agreed to invest more than $ 1 billion in Lucid Motors in Silicon Valley to produce electric vehicles.

The deal, which followed a Reuters report last month that the two parties were in talks, will provide funding to enable the commercial launch of Lucid's first electric vehicle, the Lucid Air, in 2020.

The investment comes a few weeks after Tesla Inc CEO Elon Musk said the Saudi sovereign wealth fund could help him to finance a $ 72 billion deal to take his electric car manufacturer private, though bankers doubted it and made a big investment made.

Tesla's shares fell by 2.2 percent against the news about PIF's investments in Lucid.

The deal supports Saudi efforts to build an environmentally friendly economy, a goal set out in its Vision 2030 plan to diversify the kingdom from an oil dependence.

"By investing in the fast-growing electric vehicle market, PIF gains a position in long-term growth opportunities, supports innovation and technological development, and promotes revenue and sector diversification for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia," said a spokesperson for PIF.

PIF is interested in electric cars and, earlier this year, built up an interest of just under 5 percent in Tesla by taking shares in the open market instead of acquiring newly acquired shares.

A PIF spokesman did not want to say whether he had invested in Tesla.

Obtaining cheap capital is a constant challenge for car manufacturers, who can spend $ 1 billion or more on designing a single new model.

Lucid Motors, based in Newark, California, was founded in 2007 as Atieva by Bernard Tse, former vice president and board member of Tesla, and Sam Weng, a former manager at Oracle Corp and Redback Networks.

The financing, which will be done with a special vehicle owned entirely by PIF, will be used by Lucid to complete the development and testing of the Lucid Air, build a factory in Arizona and manufacture the car. start.

"The convergence of new technologies is revolutionizing the car, but the benefits still have to be realized," said Peter Rawlinson, chief technology officer at Lucid. "This hampers the pace at which sustainable mobility and energy are applied and at Lucid we will demonstrate the full potential of the electric vehicle to help advance the industry."

PIF has already made substantial commitments to other environmentally friendly projects, including renewable energy sources and recycling, and technology companies or investments, including a $ 45 billion agreement to invest in a giant technology fund led by Japan's SoftBank Group Corp.


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