The story appears on

Page A9

July 13, 2017

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Business » IT

EV firm linked to LeEco to scrap US$1b car plant

STARTUP Faraday Future said it would move production of its planned luxury electric SUV to a new site, virtually scrapping a stalled US$1 billion Las Vegas factory amid deepening financial woes of key investor Chinese entrepreneur Jia Yueting.

Faraday is part of a network of young electric vehicle firms in China and the United States backed by Jia, who has said his company LeEco — that grew from a Netflix-like video website to a business empire spanning consumer electronics to cars within 13 years — is facing a severe shortage of cash after expanding too fast and in too many directions.

Struggling to support goals that included beating Elon Musk’s Tesla Motors in premium EV making, Jia is now trying to ride out the cash crunch by taking measures such as halting work on the Las Vegas factory and selling a Silicon Valley property.

It bought the property less than a year ago from Yahoo Inc.

On the latest decision to shift production of Faraday’s luxury electric SUV FF 91 to a new site, the startup said:

“This will allow product production to be realized faster, as well as allow our future strategy to be implemented more effectively.”

For LeEco, this marks a second major setback to its ambition to become a major EV manufacturer after it recently pulled out of a joint project with British sports car maker Aston Martin to develop RapidE electric car.

Faraday had initially planned to open the Las Vegas factory late in 2017, with a product portfolio of seven models .

That estimate was later slashed to two, including the FF 91.

Jia, who posted the Faraday statement on his social media account, did not name the new FF 91 production location.

Faraday will continue to own the Nevada factory site.

The FF 91 has been described by its designer as “weird-pretty” and Faraday executives say it will be the most technologically advanced vehicle of its kind on the market when it goes into production in early 2018.

But cash shortages have raised questions about the company’s prospects.

According to estimates from mutual fund investors, LeEco could see the market value of its listed unit, Leshi Internet Information & Technology Corp Beijing, fall around US$2.5 billion should its shares resume trading.

The company is set to hold an extraordinary shareholders’ meeting on July 17 in Shenzhen.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend