Shares of EV maker Rivian Automotive (RIVN 7.58%) popped more than 5% at the start of this week's trading after an analyst released an upbeat note about the company. As of 11:56 a.m. ET Tuesday, Rivian shares were trading up by 3.9% for the session.
The shares initially jumped after Mizuho Americas analyst Vijay Rakesh revealed that he had come away from a conference call with Rivian CFO Claire McDonough with a bullish outlook on the company. Rakesh reiterated his firm's buy rating on Rivian and set a price target on it of $80 per share, as reported by TheFly.com. That would be a gain of nearly 160% from Friday's closing price.
Rakesh said he now expects the company will phase in a second shift of workers at its Normal, Illinois, plant during the second half of the year and will also continue to cut costs. On May 11, Rivian reiterated its projection that it will produce 25,000 vehicles in 2022. The stock has jumped 55% since that release. That brought Rivian's market cap back up to just under $30 billion, up from below $20 billion at its recent low just prior to the earnings report.
At the peak it hit shortly after its initial public offering last fall, the company was valued at more than $150 billion.
In the call with Mizuho, the company revealed that it expects about one-third of 2022 production to be its electric delivery vans (EDVs) for Amazon. The e-commerce giant has ordered up to 100,000 of the vehicles, to be delivered between this year and the end of the decade.
Rivian also has a new chief operating officer starting June 1: auto industry veteran Frank Klein. His hiring was announced earlier this year. Rakesh believes Klein will help drive improvements as the company continues to ramp up production in a challenging environment.