Behind Faraday's future shutdown: the founder of layoffs and pay cuts left, Commander Jia Yueting Chengguang

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Behind Faraday's future shutdown: the founder of layoffs and pay cuts left, Commander Jia Yueting Chengguang

2019-03-01 15:46:24 409 ℃

Wen | AI Finance and Economics Society Rao Xiangyu

< p > Editor | Ji Guohua

< p > Jia Yueting's car-building trip has changed again.

In the morning of February 27, according to an internal e-mail obtained by the American technology media The Verge, electric car startup Faraday Future (hereinafter referred to as "FF") notifies employees on unpaid leave that they do not have to return to work as planned on March 1.

Subsequently, the relevant FF officers responded to the media: some employees returned to work from March 1, while others will return in the future according to the company's financing situation. Since its first employee leave last November, FF has recalled 72 employees. Currently, there are more than 400 employees in the United States and more than 1,000 in the world.

Although FF's response indicates that the company is recalling employees in succession, it has not yet given a definite answer to the date of rework for most of the remaining employees on unpaid leave. This means that since November 2018, hundreds of FF employees have been on unpaid leave for nearly four months, and the date of their return is still far away. At the same time, after the breakup of FF founder and CEO Jia Yueting with Evergrande, no substantial progress has been made in financing, and the company's tight capital chain has not been improved. After breaking up with Hengda, Jia Yueting met the golden owner

before, Xu Jiayin's entry could be said to be a great driving force for Jia Yueting to realize his dream of car-building. On June 25, 2018, Evergrande Health announced that it would acquire 100% of Shiying's shares for about HK$6.747 billion and indirectly acquire 45% of Smart King as the largest shareholder, while Smart King wholly owned FF America and FF Hong Kong. The next day after the announcement, Hengda Healthy shares rose sharply. However, with the deepening of cooperation, Hengda's intention to gain control of FF began to emerge. After injecting $800 million into FF, Hengda was reluctant to continue paying the remaining $1.2 billion and used the original agreement to block FF's outward financing. Immediately, the financial pressure of FF is highlighted. On October 3, 2018, Jia Yuetting took the lead in launching public arbitration in the name of Smart King to the Hong Kong International Arbitration Center in order to deprive Evergrande of its consent to financing as a shareholder and rescind all agreements. After

tore his face publicly, Jia Yueting also began to cut staff and salary aggressively in the company, in order to alleviate the shortage of funds.

On October 31, 2018, Jia Yueting sent an internal e-mail to employees, saying that from that week on, the annual salary of all FF employees had been reduced by 20%, and at the same time, he had to take the action of laying off employees. "The initial plan is to retain 500 to 600 people, each with the lowest monthly salary in California, about $4600 before tax, or about $50,000 annually."

In December 2018, Faraday reiterated that further cost-cutting measures had to be taken to cope with the current financial situation, including further suspension measures. It is understood that FF had extended the unpaid vacation time for hundreds of employees in the company, and said it expected that employees would not be able to return to work before February or March 2019. At that time, Faraday's future official also said that equity financing had made great progress. Investors from different backgrounds around the world highly agreed with the core value of FF product technology and team and expressed strong investment intentions for FF. They were confident that they would solve the financing problem in the next two to three months. However, things did not develop as expected by FF. On the last day of 2018, when the grudge between Jia Yueting and Xu Jiayin, which lasted for several months, was completely over, FF's shortage of funds could be said to be further strained. After contacting several investors, FF still has not received new financing. Faraday said in an E-mail later Tuesday that the company "has been seriously discussing with potential investors to raise asset-based debt and equity financing," but added that these "financing times are longer than the company initially anticipated".

FF has been thrown aside by its peers for more than one position

In fact, besides employees leaving their jobs and suspending their salaries, FF's senior management team has also collapsed.

According to another e-mail received by The Verge on October 31, 2018, Nick Sampson, one of Faraday's three future founders, left the company on Tuesday, local time. Just a day ago, Peter Savagian, a former GM executive and future senior vice president for technology and product development at Faraday, also left FF.

"The company's financial and personnel assets are virtually insolvent, and in the foreseeable future, at best, can only survive. I don't think my future role in Faraday is the way I want to go, so I will leave the company immediately. "Sampson wrote in an e-mail that he had tried his best to find a solution to the problem, but still encountered insurmountable obstacles. The three founders of

went two times, leaving Jia Yuetang as the embarrassing light rod commander of FF. More embarrassingly, he now has neither food for marching nor soldiers to fight. In the face of frequent financing and mass-produced vehicles listed on the market, Jia Yueting's odds are getting lower and lower. In the view of the industry, 2019 is the year when large-scale delivery of new car-making forces begins, and the industry shuffling will begin.

As the head enterprise of the new force, on Weekly Automobile Day on December 15, 2018, the chairman of Weilai Automobile, Li Bin, not only disclosed a brand-new ES6, but also announced that 9726 ES8 had been delivered to users. Weima Automobile also said that it expected to complete the delivery of 10,000 vehicles by the end of January 2019, while Weima will rush to the target of 100,000 vehicles in 2019. Meanwhile, Xiaopeng Automobile G3 will reach 1. It was officially launched in February and is scheduled to deliver to users on a large scale after the Spring Festival of 2019.

Compared with the players of the new car-making track mentioned above, the FF led by Jia Yueting released its first mass-produced model, FF 91, just before 2017 CES, which still has a long way to go before large-scale mass-production delivery. Moreover, the manpower and capital investment required for the formal production of automobiles is far from what Jia Yueting can afford in his difficult operation.

According to the current speed of development of the industry, Jia Yueting, who struggles alone, has been left more than one position by his peers.

"FF 91, as the first achievement of FF innovation, is now only one foot away from mass production. It's time to be ready for market and user testing." Not long ago, after FF was ranked third among the top 10 high-tech start-ups in California in 2019 by independent third-party organizations in the United States, Jia Yueting confidently expressed his expectations for the company's future in Weixin's circle of friends.

However, after breaking up with Sun Hongbin and Xu Jiayin, who else would like to accept Jia Yuetang and his last dream? The future of FF remains highly uncertain.