Electric Truck Startup Lordstown Slashes Production Guidance
Lordstown Motors (RIDE) slashed production prospects for its Endurance electric truck and said it would need to raise more money. Ride stocks are down.
Lordstown earnings report
The company lost 72 cents a share, worse than the consensus forecast of a loss of 25 cents and an increase from a loss of 16 cents a year ago.
Management now believes that production of Endurance in 2021 "will be limited to at most 50 percent of what we previously expected." Other carmakers have cut production opinions because of a global chip shortage, although Lordstown did not mention this in its statement.
On a conference call with analysts, Stephen Burns, the chief executive, said the company had contracted enough batteries to get it through for the foreseeable future and had bought enough chips to see it through this year.
Previously, the company had planned to start pre-production in a July-August timeframe, with deliveries beginning in September. On Monday, Lordstown said its schedule will start production in late September 2021, when capacity will be limited.
It has already completed 48 of the 57 prototypes and will begin trial production in July.
But Lordtown raised its forecast for operating expenses in 2021 to the midpoint of the guidance range, citing "significant increases in expenses for Beta planning, vehicle validation testing, securing parts/equipment needed for production and using third party engineering resources.
"As a result, we need to raise additional funds to complete our business plan and have already begun these discussions."
Lordstown said it is seeking loans for advanced technology vehicle manufacturing across multiple jurisdictions, as well as tax credits and grants. It hopes to secure the ATVM loan "in the next few months". Mr. Burns said the company was in discussions with lenders to use some of its assets as collateral for financing, as well as "a number of strategic big investors," which could include automakers and investors who help with "big, immediate things," such as parts and engineering.
Lordstown, meanwhile, has started building a second electric car, the van, on Endurance chassis.
Lordstown, founded in April 2019 and backed by General Motors (GM), plans to build electric trucks at a former GM plant in Ohio, primarily for the commercial market.
This is the second report since Ride shares went public via a reverse merger with SPAC in October.
It will also gain ground before an event on June 21st at BBBs headquarters in Lordstown, Ohio, on June 25th, where it will offer investors and analysts a tour of its factory and a test-drive of Endurance. Ride shares soared last week after the race was announced.
Management also dealt with a US Securities and Exchange Commission investigation, disclosed in March, in relation to allegations by short-seller Hindenburg Research that Lordstown misled investors with "fictitious" orders. The company said on Monday that a board committee would continue to review the claims and would report back by the end of the second quarter.
Burns notes that Lordstown has about 30,000 vehicle purchase agreements, "some of them with an upfront payment, more than in the past."
Ford is not the only automaker planning to bring electric trucks and vans to market. This fall, GM\'s Hummer trucks will hit the road. Rivian\'s R1T, an electric car start-up backed by Amazon (AMZN), is expected to be available in June. The Tesla (TSLA) Cyber Truck is likely to arrive sometime this year.
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