Ford sells majority stake in Rivian after reporting $7.3B write-down

Ford Motor Company has sold a majority of its Rivian shares, according to regulatory filings. Ford’s stake in the electric vehicle maker, which has been dropping steadily since May 2022, is now at 1.15%, or 10.5 million shares.

The sell comes a week after Ford reported a $7.3 billion write-down on its Rivian investment last year. Since February 2022, Rivian’s stock has plummeted almost 70%.

Ford has followed this playbook with Rivian before: Report a write-down, then sell to recuperate some of the losses. Last April, Ford reported a $5.4 billion “mark-to-market loss” on its investment in Rivian. The following month, Ford sold 15 million shares in two separate transactions, bringing its stake in the EV maker below 10%.

Ford’s relationship with Rivian began with a $500 million investment in the precocious EV startup back in 2019. At the time, Ford also said it would build a vehicle on Rivian’s “skateboard” platform. The legacy automaker canceled those plans in November 2021, citing a shift in direction toward building its own lineup of EVs. Four months later, Ford increased its in-house electrification investment to $50 billion through 2026, up from the previous $30 billion by 2025. The automaker also said it would run its EV unit as a separate business from its combustion engine business.

Other companies, like Amazon, have reported several losses from their investment in Rivian. Last week, Amazon reported a $2.3 billion valuation loss in its Rivian stock, which caused a hit to its income.

Why are companies paying the price for investing in the promising, if not troubled, EV company? Recall that Rivian’s stock hit a high of $179.47 per share before falling to the $19.62 it is at today.

Rivian’s stock is down 2.29% in afternoon trading following reports of Ford’s sale.