The financial difficulties of Faraday Future are well known and in a new investigative report, The Verge has uncovered the full breadth of issues facing the electric carmaker.
The publication has spoken with 10 former employees of Faraday Future and one person close to the company. These unnamed sources, most of whom have left the startup in the last 15 months, claim the business has been brought to a halt, predominately due to the behavior and business practices of its chief investor, Jia Yueting.
Four high-level ex-employees with intimate knowledge of Faraday’s finances claim the company only has enough funds to keep its payroll afloat through to the end of the year, unless a new injection of cash can be found. One of these former employees claims that Yueting is still searching for new investors and may have secured a new round of funding.
The Verge further reports that Yueting has insisted on keeping money, intellectual property, and employees flowing freely between Faraday Future and the electric car effort of LeEco he is pursuing in China. Worryingly, it is claimed that the vice president of administration, Chaoying Deng, has been left in charge of the money, despite limited experience with running the accounting of such a large company.
According to one former employee, Faraday Future has consistently told its employees that more money is coming but has failed to deliver on its promises.
“It was always, ‘Don’t worry, the money’s coming next month, the money’s coming next month, keep going, keep going, keep going,” the former employee said.
Beyond the lack of money, it appears as if morale among employees has reached a tipping point, with many refusing to come to work. In fact, it is claimed that on November 20th, there were so few staff at the company’s California headquarters that when Yueting arrived for an investor’s meeting, Faraday’s head of go-to market strategy was forced to send an email to employees reminding them of company work hours.
“During my time at Faraday, the company lacked an empowered CEO and COO,” said Syed Rahman, a former employee in the financial planning and analysis department.
“This, combined with a lack of understanding of Western business practices, fact-based decision making, and compliance issues, exacerbated the problems. The automotive business is highly capital-intensive with low margins, and [with] a lack of effective leadership, success in this arena is not possible,” Rahman said.
If you have a spare 30-minutes, check out the full story in the link above.