VinFast Auto Ltd. soared in its first day of trading as the Vietnamese electric-vehicle maker looks to raise its profile and take on established car manufacturers.
(Bloomberg) — VinFast Auto Ltd. soared in its first day of trading as the Vietnamese electric-vehicle maker looks to raise its profile and take on established car manufacturers.
The company’s shares gained an eye-popping 255% Tuesday in New York, giving it a market value in excess of $85 billion. That’s well above US auto giants such as Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Co.
Read More: VinFast’s De-SPAC Valuation Vaults It Past Ford, GM
VinFast debuted on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol VFS after completing a merger with blank-check company Black Spade Acquisition Co. that valued it at $23 billion. The company is backed by Vietnam’s richest man, who added tens of billions of dollars to his net worth with VinFast’s first-day gains.
The listing caps VinFast’s years-long efforts to become a publicly traded company and puts it in the same arena as Tesla Inc., Lucid Group Inc. and Rivian Automotive Inc. A listed status may also pave the way for VinFast to raise more capital as it looks to expand in the US.
Read More: EV Maker VinFast to List on Nasdaq in Rare SPAC Venue Switch
VinFast Chief Executive Officer Le Thuy said the listing isn’t a publicity stunt to introduce the still-niche brand to American car buyers, but rather a necessary step in expanding beyond its home country.
“It’s just a milestone that we want to achieve on a path to becoming a global company,” she told Bloomberg Television in an interview.
The Southeast Asian carmaker — one of the few Vietnamese firms to list in the US — broke ground on its North Carolina factory last month. The plant is expected to have an initial capacity of 150,000 vehicles a year, and the company plans to begin production in 2025.
VinFast has gotten off to a shaky start in the US. In May, the company recalled all the electric sport utility vehicles it had shipped to the country over a software defect. It’s expecting more operating and net losses in the near term as it scales vehicle production.
While EV makers have a particularly patchy record when it comes to blank-check mergers, VinFast is optimistic about its equity appraisal for the SPAC listing. The company said in a written statement to Bloomberg News last week that it saw potential for upside in its valuation.
–With assistance from Caroline Hyde and Ed Ludlow.
(Updates with trading details beginning in second paragraph.)
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