Amazon Discloses 20% Stake in Electric Vehicle Startup Rivian, Makers of Future Delivery Van

Kurt Schlosser, GeekWire
Kurt Schlosser covers the Geek Life beat for GeekWire. A longtime journalist, photographer and designer, he has worked previously for NBC News, msnbc.com and the Seattle P-I.
Amazon Discloses 20% Stake in Electric Vehicle Startup Rivian, Makers of Future Delivery Van
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As it waits on its order of tens of thousands of delivery vans, Amazon revealed Friday that it has a 20% stake in Rivian, the electric vehicle maker that it's been heavily investing in since 2019.

In a new SEC filing, the tech giant disclosed an equity interest in the startup, which is part of its overall equity investments carrying value of $3.8 billion, up from $2.7 billion at the end of 2020.

As of December 31, 2020 and September 30, 2021, equity investments not accounted for under the equity-method and without readily determinable fair values, including preferred stock of Rivian Automotive, Inc. representing an approximately 20% ownership interest, had a carrying value of $2.7 billion and $3.8 billion, and are recorded within "Other assets" on our consolidated balance sheets with adjustments recognized in "Other income (expense), net" on our consolidated statements of operations.

Amazon has backed Rivian through its Climate Pledge Fund, which is aimed at investing in companies that accelerate Amazon's pledge to be net zero carbon across its businesses by 2040. Amazon was among lead investors in a $2.5 billion financing round in Rivian in July and previously backed Rivian in 2019 in rounds of $700 million and $1.3 billion.

Founded in 2009, Rivian has raised about $10.5 billion to date. It announced plans this summer to go public at a reported valuation of $80 billion.

Amazon ordered 100,000 electric delivery vans through Rivian and said last October that it hoped to have 10,000 of them on the road as early as 2022.

The EV maker has begun production and delivery of its R1T all-electric pickup truck and will launch the R1S sport utility vehicle in December.

This story first appeared on GeekWire.

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Genies Wants To Help Creators Build ‘Avatar Ecosystems’

Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

Genies Wants To Help Creators Build ‘Avatar Ecosystems’

When avatar startup Genies raised $150 million in April, the company released an unusual message to the public: “Farewell.”

The Marina del Rey-based unicorn, which makes cartoon-like avatars for celebrities and aims to “build an avatar for every single person on Earth,” didn’t go under. Rather, Genies announced it would stay quiet for a while to focus on building avatar-creation products.

Genies representatives told dot.LA that the firm is now seeking more creators to try its creation tools for 3D avatars, digital fashion items and virtual experiences. On Thursday, the startup launched a three-week program called DIY Collective, which will mentor and financially support up-and-coming creatives.

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Here's What To Expect At LA Tech Week

Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

Here's What To Expect At LA Tech Week

LA Tech Week—a weeklong showcase of the region’s growing startup ecosystem—is coming this August.

The seven-day series of events, from Aug. 15 through Aug. 21, is a chance for the Los Angeles startup community to network, share insights and pitch themselves to investors. It comes a year after hundreds of people gathered for a similar event that allowed the L.A. tech community—often in the shadow of Silicon Valley—to flex its muscles.

From fireside chats with prominent founders to a panel on aerospace, here are some highlights from the roughly 30 events happening during LA Tech Week, including one hosted by dot.LA.

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Aavrani Co-founder Rooshy Roy On Creating Your Own Success ‘Timeline’

Yasmin Nouri

Yasmin is the host of the "Behind Her Empire" podcast, focused on highlighting self-made women leaders and entrepreneurs and how they tackle their career, money, family and life.

Each episode covers their unique hero's journey and what it really takes to build an empire with key lessons learned along the way. The goal of the series is to empower you to see what's possible & inspire you to create financial freedom in your own life.

AAVRANI Co-Founder Rooshy Roy
Photo courtesy of AAVRANI

Growing up in the suburbs of Detroit, Rooshy Roy said, as the only Indian girl in school, she spent a lot of time feeling like an outsider and like she wasn’t meeting others’ expectations of “how an Indian girl should behave.”

Flash forward 20 years, and the differences Roy was once ashamed of are now the inspiration for her skincare company.

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