Tesla Buys Michigan Auto Supplier Riviera Tool
Tesla isn’t allowed to sell its cars in the state of Michigan, but apparently the state has no problem with Tesla acquiring a Grand Rapids, Michigan-based automotive supplier.
As the Detroit Free Press reports:
Tesla Motors is acquiring a Grand Rapids-based auto supplier, giving the Silicon Valley technology company a manufacturing presence in Michigan, the Free Press has learned.
Tesla reached a deal to acquire Riviera Tool, marking the first acquisition for the burgeoning electric-vehicle and battery manufacturer, said a person familiar with the matter.
Riviera, which makes stamping parts that are shipped to Tesla’s assembly plant in Fremont, Calif., has about 100 employees. Tesla is expected to retain those workers and eventually rename the operation Tesla Tool & Die, said the source who is not authorized to speak publicly about the transaction.
Though its acquiring Riviera Tool, Tesla is expected to continue its supply deal with the other stamping companies it currently works with.
Karl Brauer, a senior analyst at Kelley Blue Book, stated:
“Tesla’s aggressive volume goal for 2015 has the automaker working overtime to secure sufficient production capacity. Purchasing a Michigan-based tool and die company illustrates Tesla’s need for a capable and dedicated manufacturing partner. It could represent the first of many such acquisitions we’ll see in the months ahead.”
It’s long been known that Tesla has had issues with various suppliers who are unwilling to ramp up production as quickly as Tesla asks of them. This move, along with others acquisitions that are expected over the coming months, could allow Tesla to expand production at the rate it requires.
Tesla joins the Detroit Three and several other automakers who have at least one manufacturing facility in the state of Michigan.
Source: Detroit Free Press