Needham positive ahead of Rivian’s (RIVN) 1Q delivery numbers

March 29, 2023 8:46 AM EDT
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Price: $13.83 -4.62%

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    14 Buy, 7 Hold, 2 Sell

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Needham reiterated a Buy rating and $26.00 price target on Rivian (NASDAQ: RIVN) ahead of the electric automaker’s 1Q delivery report. The automaker is expected to release its delivery numbers early next week.

Analyst, Chris Pierce pulled Kelly Blue book data, which pulls data from the state RMV, showing 1Q23 RIVN vehicle registrations above the consensus RIVN delivery estimate. To test the accuracy of previous predictions, Pierce pulled Kelley Blue Book 3Q22 data published on Sept 28 and compared it to final OEM 3Q22 sales and found a tight correlation. The 4Q22 data was published in Jan '23, limiting any predictive value. However, Kelley Blue Book data has historically understated RIVN deliveries, as the data may not include RIVN commercial delivery vans.

Pierce wrote in a note, “RIVN missed consensus delivery estimates in 3Q and 4Q when the Kelley Blue Book data was below consensus. 1Q23 represents the first time the data has been above consensus. We attribute the wide variance between RIVN deliveries and the data to delivery van sales not being represented, and think that the 1Q23 consensus RIVN estimate includes both retail and commercial vehicles, creating room for upside.”

Needham also updated their used vehicle tracking data for RIVN and Lucid (NASDAQ: LCID) and views the data positively for RIVN, as they found fewer used RIVN vehicles for sale compared to LCID and Ford's (NYSE: F) F-150 Lightning pick-up truck, a more direct comparison to the RIVN R1T.

Shares of RIVN are up 2.85% in pre-market trading on Wednesday.

By Michael Elkins | [email protected]

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