Pham Nhat Vuong (Founder, VinFast) & view of Playa Jefferson (forbes.com, Vantage Property Investors, Photography by Heli Photo and Ryan Gobuty/Gensler)
Vietnam-based automaker VinFast plans to open a U.S. headquarters in Playa Vista.
The decision came after the State of California offered a $20.5 million tax credit to lure the company, according to the Los Angeles Daily News.
It’s the largest California Competes tax credit ever awarded to an automaker, and one of only a handful awarded to a foreign company during the program’s 10-year history.
VinFast plans to base its U.S. operations in 15,000 square feet of office space at Rockwood Capital’s Playa Jefferson campus at 12777 W. Jefferson Boulevard.
The property is also home to local offices of Tencent America and Facebook.
The move builds on VinFast’s $200 million investment in the state. The company has a research and development office in San Francisco and has said it aims to open 35 showrooms and service centers nationwide this year. The firm also plans to open regional offices, a call center, and storefronts nationwide.
The company was founded in 2017 by Vietnamese billionaire Pham Nhat Vuong and started selling gasoline-powered cars in 2019.
It sold 30,000 vehicles last year and earlier this year forecast around 45,000 sales for 2021. VinFast plans to unveil two sport utility vehicles at the L.A. Auto Show that starts this week.
Ford, the top-selling auto brand in the U.S. overall, sold 1.9 vehicles last year; Tesla, the leader in EVs, sold 499,550. Other EV manufacturers have set up in the L.A. and the wider Southern California region in recent years.
Rivian, which has been billed as a rival to EV giant Tesla, is based in Irvine and opened its third facility in Southern California earlier this year with a sublease for space at Hackman Capital partners’ 401 Coral Circle building in El Segundo.
EV battery-maker Romeo Power recently left its L.A. headquarters for a larger headquarters in Cypress, Orange County.
Palo Alto-based industry leader Tesla over the summer leased a 322,000-square-foot warehouse in San Bernardino. Faraday Future is also headquartered in Gardena. [LADN] — Dennis Lynch