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RJ Scaringe participated in the Wolfe Research Virtual Global Auto, Auto Tech, and Mobility Conference 2022 and here are some of the things he touched on during the conference, thanks to Reddit:
  • New software releases every 2 weeks so far
  • Still paying attention to minor issues and making small tweaks (ex: tailgate parts); this includes the delivery van (had a small fleet going to learn how to improve, adding handles and other things)
  • There are two separate production lines: consumer and delivery vans
  • Challenges with ramping for themselves and with their suppliers (mentioned semiconductors specifically); several components that are very problematic to get at times
    • Asked what else can Rivian do in their control to mitigate the problem and get to desired volumes -- very much dependent on the area of the vehicle and where that area is in the build process (ex: end of line parts vs. internal and beginning of line parts)... semiconductors are a big problem because those are deeply internal parts. But has offered help to their suppliers to get parts (ex: bring team members to help their assembly lines) >> really want to build strong relationships with their suppliers
    • "My day starts and ends with getting the parts we need" (paraphrasing)
  • Shut down the plant in January to make a number of changes to the line
  • For a few weeks, there was over 800 plant workers out with Omicron
  • "Georgia is for our future vehicles" (this has been said before, just reiterating for people who may not know)
  • Highlighted the importance of certain pieces being done in-house vs. third party (Examples -- in-house: software, electronics, platform; third party: tires, plastics)
  • Working on their own battery cells; working with vendors to invest and build out dedicated capacity; building out more relationships with more vendors (announcements coming soon)
  • 2-motor R1’s coming out in the future
  • Real buildout of their product line coming “soon”
  • Trying to sync battery roadmaps for chemistry, materials, technology. Built a team around all aspects battery (supply chain, mining, pricing, etc)
  • "Really deeply believe it's necessary to have a direct relationship with customers to control price and the experience"
  • "We want to design services in a very different way" ... service done at your house, or business, and be much more intentional about that service while utilizing the vehicle's data
  • Focus on efficiency in all aspects (shop locations, services being done, etc) and consistency
  • Rivian membership will provide recurring revenue opportunities and a differentiated experience
  • Fleet management services another recurring revenue opportunity; make the platform stronger and utilize telemetry to help fleets be more efficient
  • How big do you think Rivian could become? >> "We want to add a whole bunch of different form factors across different markets and different price points... so with that and our brand, one of the core skills we view necessary is the ability to simultaneously launch different programs."
    • Reiterated Georgia for future, and smaller, products
    • Mentioned future products in the commercial space
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