Vietnamese carmaker VinFast eyes $2bn IPO in the US

VinFast IPO carmaker
VinFast VF8 image courtesy VinFast

VinFast, an EV carmaker based in Vietnam, has confidentially filed to launch an IPO in the United States, with a goal raise of US$2 billion.

Vingroup JSC, VinFast’s parent conglomerate, has been working with advisers in preparation for the IPO. Initially set for Q22021, the IPO could happen in the latter half of 2022, according to Le Thi Thu Thuy, CEO of VinFast.

The firm’s plans to go public in the United States are likely to make its IPO the largest ever by a Vietnamese firm, according to Bloomberg. If it goes through, the automobile manufacturer would be one of just a few Vietnamese firms that have been listed in the US.

VinFast’s US IPO plans are still in their early stages, with the size and price range of the offering yet to be determined. However, this move could help the company achieve its goal of becoming a global carmaker.

Luisa Beltran, at Barron’s, says that the announcement comes at an unusual time for the IPO market. “As of April 4, just 26 companies had listed their shares this year using a traditional IPO. This compares to 101 IPOs for the same period in 2021,” she added.

“VinFast is moving ahead with its plans but the timing of the IPO is very much open. There needs to be a window to get the IPO done and it could easily take a couple of months,” said an anonymous source to Reuters.

The announcement comes after VinFast revealed plans to build an electric vehicle (EV) factory in North Carolina, with a total investment of US$4 billion. The factory is anticipated to produce 150,000 EVs per year. This move will mark VinFast’s first manufacturing site outside of Vietnam.

Currently, VinFast offers two versions of electric sport-utility vehicles. The VF 8, a midsize eSUV, can travel 317 miles on a single charge. It begins at US$41,000 on the VinFast website. In contrast, the VF 9 is a full-size eSUV with a range of up to 422 miles and starts at US$56,000. VinFast was founded in 2017 and is headquartered in Hanoi, Vietnam. The company produces electric cars, motorcycles, and bicycles. VinFast is majority-owned by Vingroup JSC, a Vietnamese conglomerate with interests in real estate, retail, agriculture, and healthcare. Vingroup JSC is also the owner of Vinmec, a chain of hospitals in Vietnam.

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