By Hyunjoo Jin
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Vietnamese automaker VinFast plans to list on the U.S. stock market within the next couple of years, its chief executive told Reuters, joining a growing list of electric vehicle startups taking advantage of investor excitement to raise money.
VinFast, established in 2017 as part of Vingroup JSC, the largest conglomerate in the Communist-ruled country, also plans to start producing electric cars in the United States in the second half of 2024, global Chief Executive Michael Lohscheller said in an interview on Wednesday.
"Of course we work through different options. But yes, we will also go after an IPO in the United States in the next one or two years," said the former Volkswagen and Opel executive who was named to his position at VinFast in July.
Lohscheller said the company, which has a car factory in Vietnam, sees U.S. production as "an incredibly important strategic decision ... because shipping cars and cars around the world is not a long term setup."
"We want to do everything locally," he said.
VinFast unveiled two electric sport utility vehicles, VF e35 and VF e36, at the Los Angeles Auto Show on Wednesday.
It will begin taking pre-orders in the U.S. market for the electric SUVs in spring 2022 and expects to begin delivering them in the fourth quarter of that year.
(Reporting by Hyunjoo Jin; Editing by Karishma Singh)