By: Diane Benjamin
A Saudi family that built its business on gasoline-fueled cars is sitting on an almost $11.5 billion fortune after electric truck maker Rivian Automative Inc. surged on its trading debut in 2021’s biggest initial public offering.
Abdul Latif Jameel, a Jeddah-based group named after its founder and today run by his sons, holds almost 114 million shares in Rivian after investing $303 million into the U.S. company, according to the sale prospectus.
Rivian’s shares rose as much as 53% Wednesday in New York and closed at $100.73, up 29% from their IPO price of $78. It ended its first day as a public company valued at almost $88 billion.
Founder and Chief Executive Officer R.J. Scaringe set up the first iteration of what would become Rivian in 2009 in his home state of Florida. Early work centered around a smaller sports car, which was later shelved in favor of a rugged pickup at the direction of Mohammed Abdul Latif Jameel.