AT&T to Buy Rivian EVs as Part of Electrification Program

Electric Vans, Trucks, SUVs Will Begin to Enter AT&T Fleet in Early 2024
Rivian showroom
Rivian employees meet in the company’s showroom at Ponce City Market in Atlanta. (Arvin Temkar/The Atlanta Journal-Constitution via TNS)

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Electric vehicle startup Rivian has found a new Fortune 500 customer for its delivery vans after ending an exclusivity deal earlier this year with Amazon.

On Dec. 14, Rivian announced that telecommunications giant AT&T will purchase Rivian electric vans as well as vehicles in its R1 platform of trucks and SUVs. The purchases are part of a fleet electrification pilot program designed to improve safety, efficiency and cut emissions.

The companies did not disclose the number of vehicles that will be purchased but said Rivian vehicles will start to enter AT&T’s fleet early next year.

“This pilot is another important step in our ongoing efforts toward sustainability, reducing our carbon footprint and embracing a cleaner future for our operations,” Hardmon Williams, an AT&T senior vice president, said in a release.

AT&T has pledged to be carbon neutral by 2035. Adopting EVs and hybrids, making changes to vehicle routes, deploying artificial intelligence and reducing its fleet size are parts of that effort, the company said.

“Around a quarter of CO2 emitted in the transportation sector in the U.S. comes from commercial vans, so it’s imperative we do all we can as soon as possible to help cut emissions,” said Dagan Mishoulam, Rivian vice president of strategy and fleet. “Our category-defining vehicles offer some of the most advanced technology in the sector and are continually improved through over-the-air updates. We’re very much looking forward to expanding our relationship with AT&T to help them achieve their climate goals.”


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Rivian counts AT&T as a vendor with the Dallas-based wireless, cable and internet company providing connectivity services for the automaker, including over-the-air software updates.

California-based Rivian operates one plant in Illinois where it assembles electric vans, the R1T truck and R1S SUV. Rivian picked Georgia for a second factory an hour east of downtown Atlanta where it expects to build its next line of vehicles, known as the R2 platform. Vertical construction of the future $5 billion plant in southern Walton and Morgan counties is expected to start early next year.

Amazon, a major Rivian investor, has pledged to buy 100,000 Rivian delivery vans by 2030. As of the third quarter of this year, Amazon has bought 10,000 units.

In November, Rivian and Amazon ended an exclusivity pact, a move that allowed Rivian to sell vans to other customers, and AT&T is the first. Cox Enterprises, which owns The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, owns about a 4% stake in Rivian.

High interest rates, supply chain issues and other challenges have hampered Rivian the past two years, but the company has said it is working through those issues and has said it aims to reach profitability by the end of next year.

In November, Rivian increased its production goal for 2023 to 54,000. The company reported a $1.4 billion loss in the third quarter.

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