Nikola (NKLA) profit for 1 sq.m. 2022

Nikola Motor Company

Source: Nikola Motor Company

Electric heavy truck maker Nikola said Thursday it shipped its first semi-trailers to customers in April and that it now has purchase orders and letters of intent for more than 500 Tre battery electric trucks.

The company is also working with customers, including Anheuser-Busch Inbev, to develop a longer-range hydrogen fuel cell version due next year.

Production of the Tre battery-electric semi-trailer began at the end of March, with the first 11 trucks shipped to dealers in April. While Nikola did not recognize any revenue from truck deliveries in the first quarter, it generated about $1.9 million in service revenue, helping it beat Wall Street’s expectations for the period.

Shares jumped about 9% in early trading on Thursday.

Here are the key numbers:

  • Adjusted loss per share: 21 cents, less than the 27 cents per share loss expected by Wall Street, according to Refinitiv consensus estimates.
  • Income: Refinitiv’s consensus estimate of $1.9 million beat Wall Street’s expectations of $100,000.

Analyst coverage of Nikola, which went public as a result of its June 2020 merger with a specialized acquisition company, remains weak. None of the seven analysts surveyed by Refinitiv expected Nicola to exceed $1 million.

Nicola said he is still on track to deliver 300 to 500 of his Tres battery electric vehicles in 2022, according to his guidance released in February. The battery electric version of the Tre is designed as a short-range truck for local use.

The state of California made the model eligible for the Buyer Reward Program at the end of last year. Nikola said it had orders for 134 trucks through the California program as of the end of April.

The company said the fuel cell version of the Tre, which will have sufficient range, completed an initial series of tests with Anheuser-Busch in California in late April and is on track to enter production in the second half of 2020. 2023.

CFO Kim Brady said during the company’s earnings call that it had about $385 million in cash at the end of the first quarter, along with about $409 million remaining on two existing equity lines with Tumim Stone Capital.

The company also said Monday it has raised an additional $200 million through a private sale of convertible bonds. The company expects to receive the $200 million by early June. At the same time, Nikola’s cash should be enough to finance operations for at least another year without additional fees, the company said.

Nikola was one of the first electric vehicle startups to go public. Like other post-SPAC EV makers, its stock surged in the weeks following the completion of the merger – only to bounce back to the ground after the scandal surfaced.

Outspoken Nikola founder Trevor Milton abruptly resigned in September 2020 after short-selling Hindenburg Research said he misled investors about the state of Nikola’s technology. Milton has since been indicted by a federal grand jury for making false statements. Milton denies the allegations.

In December, Nikola paid $125 million to the Securities and Exchange Commission to settle related expenses.

Few investors expected Nikola to recover from the scandals. By Wednesday’s close, the stock was down about 27% year-to-date and 91% from its June 2020 high of $79.73.

But the company’s recent success in completing and delivering its first battery-electric trucks, as well as its progress in developing longer-range trucks for launch next year, appear to be key evidence and could breathe new life into the stock.

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