The world’s third most valuable car-maker you’ve never heard of


Shares of VinFast surged 23% on Monday, quadrupling the Vietnamese electric car manufacturer’s market value after its initial public offering earlier this month, making it a rival to Tesla and Toyota — though investors are bracing for volatility.
The VF-8 electric vehicle from VinFast, a Vietnamese automaker producing electric cars and SUV’s, is on display at their showroom in Santa Monica, California, on July 18, 2022.
Key Takeaways
  • VinFast traded at $83.16 per share as of 11 a.m. Monday, just two weeks after its debut on the Nasdaq Global Select Market with a share price of $10 and a valuation of $23 billion following a merger with Black Spade Acquisition Co. in a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) deal.
  • VinFast, now with a market cap of $189 billion, is the third most-valuable automaker on the market behind Tesla with a $756.4 billion valuation and Toyota at $225 billion, but its production lags well behind both—VinFast expects to sell up to 50,000 electric vehicles this year, Reuters reported, compared to the 1.8 million projected by Tesla and Toyota’s target of 1.5 million EVs per year by 2026.
  • Billionaire founder Pham Nhat Vuong, listed as the world’s 23rd richest person by Forbes on Monday, controls about 99% of VinFast through his own shares and those held by his wife and his conglomerate Vingroup JSC, Bloomberg reported, and the comparatively small number of shares available for trading means almost any movement at all leads to big changes in the stock.
  • VinFast’s trading volume is significantly lower than its competitors and of companies with similar valuation—about 2.1 million shares of VinFast were traded last Monday, August 21, compared to 135.7 million of Tesla and 12.3 million of Comcast, which has a similar market cap.
  • The carmaker broke ground on its first American factory in North Carolina last month with plans to begin production at the $4-billion facility in 2025. As of June, only 137 electric vehicles by VinFast were registered on U.S. roads.

Malaysia’s Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad drives a VinFast Lux SA2.0 luxury SUV manufactured by Vietnam’s first homegrown car manufacturer VinFast in Hanoi on August 28, 2019.

AFP via Getty Images

Forbes Valuation

Pham Nhat Vuong has an estimated net worth of $55.9 billion, making him the richest person in Vietnam and the 23rd richest in the world. He is the chair of Vingroup, the largest conglomerate in Vietnam, with units in the real estate development, EV, technology and retail sectors.

Key Background

VinFast was founded by Vuong in 2017 and the next year announced a partnership with Chevrolet that gave it the exclusive rights to sell the brand in Vietnam and the ownership of a General Motors’ factory in Hanoi to build an “all-new, global small car.” It sent its first cars for testing in 2019 and in December of 2021 delivered its first batch of electric crossovers to customers. Reuters reported VinFast sold only 7,400 cars last year—all in Vietnam—but has projected sales between 40,000 and 50,000 cars this year as it expands beyond the country’s borders.

VinFast’s VF8 electric SUV is the only car currently for sale in the United States, and only at 13 showrooms in California, but the company is planning to start offering its larger SUV later this year and two others next year, CNN reported. By comparison, Tesla delivered 1.3 million cars in 2022 and Toyota sold 10.5 million. In May, VinFast recalled all of the cars it had shipped to the U.S. over a screen failure that saw the display go blank. VinFast lost $2.1 billion in 2022, the Guardian reported.

This article was first published on and all figures are in USD.

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