Saudi sovereign fund invests $1bn in U.S. electric auto firm

18 September, 2018, 20:27 | Author: Regina Silva
  • Source Lucid

Saudi Arabia on Monday announced it has signed off on a US$1 billion investment in USA carmaker Lucid Motors with the aim of helping the Tesla rival roll out electric cars.

Newark, California-based Lucid Motors had raised a total of $131 million in funding prior to the PIF's investment, according to Crunchbase.com.

"Lucid shares the vision of the Fund to establish a world class luxury electric auto manufacturer".

Saudi Arabia is already a big investor in Tesla, reportedly with 5 per cent, and was presumed to be the provider of the funds Elon Musk claimed he had lined up to take the $US50 billion company private.

The investment, which still needs approval from relevant authorities, will pave the way for Lucid Motors to launch its first electric vehicle in 2020.

The fledgling automaker will use this investment to finish the development and testing of its first auto, the Air, in addition to constructing Lucid's upcoming factory in Casa Grande, Arizona.

"At Lucid, we will demonstrate the full potential of the electric-connected vehicle in order to push the industry forward", said Rawlinson, who worked as the lead engineer of the Tesla Model S before joining Lucid.

The Lucid Air is very much a luxury vehicle in the mould of Tesla
The Lucid Air is very much a luxury vehicle in the mould of Tesla

Silicon Valley-based Lucid confirmed Monday that the Saudis will invest $1.0 billion in the company, believed to be for a majority stake. The range-topping version is expected to offer as much as 1,000 hp and 400 miles.

For his part, Peter Rawlinson, Chief Technology Officer of Lucid, said "the convergence of new technologies is reshaping the automobile, but the benefits have yet to be truly realized".

There are multiple reports that the US Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating the disclosure, including asking board members what they knew about Musk's plans. The $11 billion loan allows it to make further investments without divesting from its other holdings.

This Transaction also supports the efforts emphasized in Vision 2030 to build a sustainable future economy that is environmentally-friendly.

However, other business promises made by the crown prince have yet to come to fruition.

Officials have suggested the Saudi Arabian Oil Co. could have a valuation of $2 trillion.

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