Shares of Churchill Capital Corp. IV (NYSE: CCIV) are up over 16% today following rumors that its subsidiary Lucid Motors could partner with Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) in a potential EV deal. Last February, Churchill Capital acquired Lucid to bring it public via a SPAC (Special Purpose Acquisition Company) merger at a USD 24 Billion valuation. Months prior to the deal, investor enthusiasm sent Churchill’s stock soaring over 470% to USD 58 per share, giving the Company a valuation of USD 57 Billion. However, once news of the deal broke, a massive sell off was triggered that sent the stock down to USD 20 as investors realized at the time Lucid Motors was overvalued.
Lucid has long been considered as a potential rival to Tesla, having been founded in 2007 by ex-Tesla engineer Peter Rawlinson, who reportedly helped develop the Tesla Model S. Though the company has not yet begun manufacturing at its Arizona facility, the Lucid Air’s design and starting price of USD 69,900 has already captivated many investors. Apple also plans to launch an EV of its own as soon as 2024, and recent developments have indicated that Lucid may be a potential candidate to join that project.
It’s expected that Apple will soon announce a joint venture with Magna International Inc. (NYSE: MGA) and LG Electronics Inc. for the EV project. The deal, for now, will reportedly not preclude other companies from taking part in the project. In a recent interview Lucid CEO Rawlinson declined to comment when asked if Apple had approached the Company about a potential deal. Of course as per NYSE rules companies are required to deny false rumors, and Rawlinson’s refusal to do so outright have further fueled speculation over an Apple-Lucid deal. Lucid Motors is set to begin production of its first vehicles shortly, and to date reservations of the Air Dream Edition have been fully booked.