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Lion Electric stock was initially supposed to trade on exchanges after an IPO. Instead, the company has decided to go the SPAC route.
That means the stock will have some help getting to the public markets, and it will do so more quickly.
On Nov. 30, 2020, Lion announced a merger with Northern Genesis Acquisition Corp. (NASDAQ: NGA).
The company is currently valued at $1.9 billion and will trade on the NYSE. The Lion Electric stock ticker will show up on the NYSE as "LEV."
But is Lion Electric a buy?
SPACs were on fire in 2020. Some even called it the "year of the SPAC." With latest SPAC merger, 2021 will be no different. Lion could be one of the biggest buying opportunities yet…
Many recent SPAC deals have involved emerging electric vehicle stocks wanting to cash in on the advent of EVs. Tesla's newfound profitability over several quarters seemed to push EVs into mainstream headlines.
Now with several COVID-19 vaccines underway in 2021, there seems to be even more upside in the broad market. Continuing gains in the broad market indexes gives hope to any stocks making their debuts.
This bodes well for EV investors, in stride with a 687% industry growth projection from McKinsey. The research firm said this industry could go from $3.3 million to $26 million in value by 2030.
This is all exciting news for EV stocks. But the story of the EV sector is really a "tale of two cities."
Why EV Stocks Aren't Made Equal
We recommended Workhorse back in Jan. 30, 2020, when it traded for just $2.76. Many readers who listened would have banked more than a 689% profit.
Nikola, on the other hand, took a relative nosedive since its June 2020 IPO. The stock went from a high of $79 to as low as $18, a 77% loss for investors who bought at the top.
The biggest difference between these companies was that Workhorse already had some money in play. Workhorse had sold some electric truck units already, it had a budding delivery drone system, and it was in the process of setting up an old GM production plant for its own purposes.
Nikola, however, had no sales. And its CEO stepped down in September after being accused of fraud – a short-seller report said he had exaggerated the company's technology. General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) was also going to buy an equity stake in the company, but it recently backed out.
Of course, Nikola isn't dead in the water yet. But this distinction with Workhorse paints a helpful picture of how to go about investing in new EV stocks.
Workhorse went on to pass a safety standards test and is moving closer to a contract with the U.S. Postal Service. It's soaring while Nikola still sits under $20.
Now, the question today is whether Lion is a Workhorse or a Nikola. Let's find out…
Why Lion Electric Could Beat Workhorse
What's better than a deal with USPS? How about a deal with Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN)?
That's right, Lion Electric is supplying Amazon delivery trucks. For now, it's set to provide trucks for the company's "middle mile" operations, which is transport from warehouses to distribution centers.
The deal is only 10 trucks thus far. But this is bigger than it sounds.
Amazon is the largest e-commerce company in the world by market cap, $1.6 trillion. The company doubled its revenue as more customers began buying groceries and other goods via delivery under lockdown.
But even as lockdowns have ended or become more moderate, e-commerce is not expected to slow down. The e-commerce industry is set to be valued at $4.9 trillion in 2021. That will have been 265% growth from $1.3 trillion in 2014.
Meanwhile, grocery and food delivery apps are having their heyday, sure to have its hooks in the populace with or without a lockdown.
The bottom line here is that Amazon demand will continue to thrive. And that's going to require more trucks. So, Lion Electric getting a foot in the door, however big, is good news for Lion Electric stock.
Now, you might not want to simply buy a stock because it's partnered with Amazon. But there are a few other reasons to watch this one.
Is Lion Electric Stock a Buy?
Lion Electric is a Canadian electric truck and bus company with a growing American presence.
It delivered its first electric trucks in September 2020. And it is going to supply the entire Canadian National Railway with its trucks.
The company is already supplying electric school bus fleets around the U.S. in states like California and Minnesota. But it plans to begin manufacturing in the United States as well next year.
Right now, Lion Electric is checking out 10 different places to build in nine states. These include California, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Washington, and Wisconsin.
Lion currently produces 2,500 vehicles per year at its Canadian facility, featuring all-electric urban trucks and buses. It plans to deliver 650 additional trucks and buses in 2021.
These companies have raised a combined $200 million in private investment in public equity (PIPE) and $320 million in cash, which will be used to fund Lion's expansion in the U.S.
Lion hopes to start producing trucks in the United States in 2023.
Meanwhile, the electric bus business shows promise. In addition to its heavy-duty truck, Lion has three school bus models and a transit bus.
Some expect 100% of school buses on the road to be electric by 2030. And Lion has had first-mover advantage in this field. In fact, it was responsible for North America's first all-electric school buses, unveiled in late 2019.
Schools may have been shut down in 2020, but Lion's product segments are diversified enough to sustain the company until they reopen. Now that we're looking forward to vaccines with over 90% success rates, demand for school buses could give Lion electric stock a nice jolt down the line.
Here’s the clincher, though…
If Lion wasn’t already making its presence known, the company recently announced a new battery manufacturing plant in Quebec.
In the race to dominate EVs, top companies are interested in being as self-reliant as possible to remain competitive. Tesla’s lithium mining and Nio’s battery service are examples of this.
Now, with Lion showing its range, the company is clearly on the way to massive growth.
Lion recently increased its employee count by 51%. It had an annual revenue of $7.7 million per year, which will no doubt rise as the company further penetrates the United States.
It was founded in 2008 and already has over 300 vehicles on the road.
As far as EV stocks go, we'd say Lion is in league with Workhorse… or better.
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About the Author
Mike Stenger, Associate Editor for Money Morning at Money Map Press, graduated from the Perdue School of Business at Salisbury University. He has combined his degree in Economics with an interest in emerging technologies by finding where tech and finance overlap. Today, he studies the cybersecurity sector, AI, streaming, and the Cloud.