FARADAY FUTURE ELECTRIC CARS
Funded by Chinese company LeTV, the Californian based start-up Faraday Future is one of the many Tech funded newcomers to the auto industry. Faraday’s strategy centers around a modular platform, like LEGO, whereby it can mix and match a small number of components and add it to a single rectangular base to create various models. The company stated that it benefit from lessons learned from previous EV failures and Tesla’s growing pains. Unfortunately based on the companies performance and the 2017 unveiling of it’s “production” car those benefits did not transpire.
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FARADAY FUTURE ELECTRIC VEHICLES IN THE NEWS
2019 Week 1 - FF settles court action with investor
It has been two years since the disastrous unveiling of the FF91 at the CES in Las Vegas and the Faraday Future soap opera is continuing. In the latest round of drama by FF’s founder, Jia Yueting entered into a spat with its most recent white night investor Evergrande Health Industry Group which saw the parties facing each other off in the Hong Kong courts. Fortunately, FF and Evergrande reconciled this week allowing the production process of the FF91 to continue…., until the next episode in the FF soap opera. According to the settlement FF and Evergrande entered into a restructuring agreement whereby Jia Yueting can buy back 32% of the company’s shares over the next five years. FF also issued a statement saying that according to the agreement signed by both parties, Furthermore, FF’s asset preservation pledge and equity financing rights will be released, which can be used for the company’s future debt and equity financing. At the same time, the statement said that the FF’s A round financing before the investment was valued at 2.45 billion US dollars while the post-investment valuation was adjusted to 3.25 billion US dollars.
The buyback value agreed to is $600 million in year one, or $700 million in year two, or $800 million in year three, or $920 million in year four, or finally $1.05 billion in year five.
2018 Week 39 - FF81 price indication
Faraday Future has been ramping up its operations after receiving a capital injection from China Evergrande Group. The company based in China and the USA announced this week that it will commence with sales of the FF91 luxury crossover in the first half of 2019. The order book for the launch edition of the FF91 named the “FF Futurist” will start for the US market produced at the leased plant in Hanford California sometime in the first half of 2019 while
Unconfirmed media reports in China speculated the follow up to the FF91 the FF81 will be introduced at a price starting from RMB300,000. The FF81 will retain the design language of the FF91 and some of its performance.
Faraday Future also announced recently that it has attracted a new wave of talent as engineers from other automakers such as Tesla, Honda, GM and Ford joined the team at its Hanford plant.
2018 Week 33 - FF establish HQ in China
One can’t be blamed for being confused when reading press announcements by Faraday Future and its shareholders the past week. A press release on the Faraday Future (FF) website dated August 16 states that the company does not have any plans to move its global headquarters to anywhere outside of California and goes further providing reasoning why it will not change. FF spawned from the Chinese online video service provider LeTV and its controversial founder Jia Yueting ran into financial trouble. The company was bailed out in June by Chinese property giant Evergrande Health Industry Group which acquired 45% in the company. The white night shareholder Evergrande announced this week that Evergrande Faraday Future Intelligent Vehicle (Guangdong) Co., Ltd which acquired a 401,000 square meter piece of land in Nansha District, Guangzhou will establish FFs operating HQ in China. The company aims to produce 5 million vehicles over the next ten years such as the FF91 and FF81 electric vehicles based around a connected intelligent mobility ecosystem. Evergrande Faraday Future stated that it would achieve its goal through the development of five R&D and production bases throughout China. Although the Chinese base is labeled as “Operational” HQ in the country a poisoned pill in the funding arrangement by Evergrande Health could see the global HQ shift to China. According to the agreement should FF founder Jia Yueting not be able to bring the first batch of FF91’s to market in Q1 2019 he loses his majority shareholding, giving control to Evergrande Health. At the end of July FF announced that it completed the first body of the FF91 at its Hanford California plant, ahead of its own timeline objectives. The company said that it expects to deliver its first vehicles in December 2018.
FF’s original shareholder LeTV confirmed this week that it does not have any knowledge of operations or shareholding in FF. All reference to LeAuto and LeEco disappeared from the dialogue of any of the parties involved over the last six months.
2018 Week 26 - Funding certainty for FF91 production
Faraday Future confirmed this week that it received approval from the US Government through the CFIUS for its first-round funding paving the way for the production of its FF91 luxury EV first introduced at the CES 2017. The investor of $2 billion into Faraday Future is Hong Kong-listed Evergrande Health Industry Group (0708.HK – EVERGRANDE HEALTH). The new shareholding structure of Faraday Future is:
- Evergrande Health – 45%
- Original Shareholder – 33%
- FF Staff – 22%
Faraday Future stated that it will use the funds to accomplish it’s top priority – finalizing the development and delivering the first production vehicle, FF 91 to both the US and Chinese markets. The company elaborated saying that the investment will also support the expansion of its product pipeline, develop cutting-edge technologies and grow the business rapidly in the global marketplace, including our manufacturing facilities in Hanford, California and in Guangzhou Nansha, Guangdong Province, China.
Faraday Future’s plans have been shrouded in controversy with a lot of false promises and false starts. Nonetheless, the company seems to have used the opportunity to continue road testing the FF91 over the last two years. Let’s hope the company achieves its goals and add economy class EVs to its range.
2018 Week 7 - Faraday Future teases SUV
The poster child of how not to run an EV company, Faraday Future, this week held a Global Suppliers Summit at its HQ in Los Angeles where it showed sketches of its second EV, a compact SUV. Faraday Future apparently secured $1.5 billion in funding from a backer in Hong Kong which will be made available on it reaching certain unknown milestones. The FF SUV is expected to cost in the region of $100,000 to $150,000 which is more “affordable” than its first production EV, the FF91. Faraday Future is yet to start construction on its assembly plant in Hanford, Nevada to bring its first EV to production.
2018 Week 1 - Faraday Future CEO/Founder Blacklisted
Faraday Futures founder, Jia Yueting, has been blacklisted in China and requested to come home to face his creditors. Jia Yueting, however, announced that he would stay in the USA to complete a billion dollar financing round to save the company. Based on past experiences it difficult to believe his claims though.
2017 Week 26 - Faraday Future to get new lease on life
We have followed the Chinese “Netflix,” LeTVs, misadventures in the electric vehicle sector for the past year. LeTVs auto companies, Faraday Future in the USA and the LeEco in China, is well known for overpromising and underdelivering on its goals. The reason for the failure of the enterprises to make good on the hype created around it stems mostly from a cash crunch at the parent company, LeTV, due to it overextending itself in a wide range of projects. The founder of LeTV, Jia Yueting, had to personally jump in and save the two electric vehicles from faltering as groundbreaking of the Faraday Future ground to a halt while the launch of the FF91 at the CES 2017 flopped and the JV with Aston Martin was suspended. At the start of June, the Shenzhen Stock Exchange suspended the launch of the company’s RMB 2 billion bond which was supposed to provide cash flow to LeTV and its subsidiaries. This week Jia Yueting announced that LeTV would complete A-round financing by the end of the year to fund its vehicle projects housed under LeAuto. The funding will be used for mass production of electric vehicles. Jia Yeating stepped down recently as General Manager at LeTV and took a board position at LeAuto and FF Global. Faraday Future also clawed back some reputation this week as the FF91 prototype set a new production vehicle record at Pikes Peak.The FF91s time of 11 minutes 25.083 seconds record was 20 seconds faster than the previous record set by a modified Tesla Model S. Should the funding fails it will most probably be the end of the projects as LeTV has racked up large debts already resulting in large-scale layoffs and halting of projects.
2017 Week 5 - Faraday Future downsizes its plant and model pipeline
Faraday Future’s future remains a contradiction in terms as the company struggles to remain afloat. This week the company tried to allay fears about the future of its North Las Vegas plant. The company announced that construction would go ahead albeit on a much smaller scale in a phased approach. The new phased construction is in line with the company’s reduced model lineup down from 7 models to 2. The smaller lineup now only consist of the FF91 unveiled in January at the CES in Las Vegas and a crossover targeted at the Tesla Model X. It remains to be seen if the company can achieve its new goals amongst the challenges created by its financial position, including holding on to the necessary skills as the start-up keep on losing key executives.
2017 Week 1 - Faraday unveiling of FF91 at CES a flop
Faraday Future unveils its FF91 at the CES 2017 in Las Vegas. The FF91 presented great gimmicks but Tesla Killer it ain’t. In all fairness, the company claims that the vehicle is a production model, but it yet has to deliver a single working version as the two cars presented to the media were only Beta versions. The company’s demonstration also went horribly wrong and removed the video of it and replaced it with an edited version. Fortunately the original has been downloaded by various media outlets for posterity. Follow the link for the alternative reality as opposed to the company’s reality.
2016 Week 52 - Some more groundbreaking of vehicle plants in the group, but will it be build?
The controversial LeEco announced the groundbreaking of its plant in the city of Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province China. LeEco is entwined between Faraday Future and the LeSee electric vehicle manufactured by LeEco. Both companies were founded by Chinese businessman Jia Yueting. Both businesses are known for making bold statements and big ticket announcements just to be followed by press reports of cash flow and funding problems. The announcement comes at a time when Faraday Future is battling to break ground on its plant in Northern Los Angeles. The company could not even pay the $21 million deposit to Aecon despite being offered $300 million by the local authorities for building the assembly plant there. LeEco has also partnered with Aston Martin on the RapidE, where it will help with the development of the zero emission technology. Faraday Future is said to hold the patents to the technology, but recent reports state that the technology is in fact held by a separate company in the Cayman Islands, creating insecurity for investors and borrowers.
2016 Week 49 - Faraday reveals teasers of its electric vehicle
Faraday Future revealed several teasers of its Electric Vehicle in anticipation of its launch during the Computer and Electronics Show in Las Vegas early next year. The teasers posted on Instagram included darkened images of the rear and front of the vehicle, leaving much to the imagination. The teasers also included video’s of the masked vehicle in motion and racing a Bentley and Tesla. The company is keeping up appearances despite recent reports that cash flow issues are hampering the construction of its Las Vegas assembly plant.
2016 Week 46 - Financial stress impacts construction of Vegas assembly plant
General speculation that some of the Chinese tech companies entering the electric vehicle space might run into financial trouble had its first high-profile casualty. Faraday Future, a LeEco company this week halted construction of its Las Vegas facility. LeEco CEO, Jia Yeuting, who invested $300m of his personal funds announced that the company is short of cash and that construction would be delayed to 2017. The company, however, was able to secure further funding commitments from 10 Chinese companies of around $600m. Investors included Hailan, a Chinese apparel firm who’s investment is a bid to support China’s auto industry.
2016 Week 42 - Unveil scheduled for 2017 CES Las Vegas
The Chinese Electric Vehicle manufacturer based in Los Angeles, Faraday Future announced via Twitter this week that it would unveil its new electric vehicle at the 2017 Computer and Electronics Show, held from 5 to 8 January 2017 in Las Vegas. The company has partnered with AECOM in building a sustainable manufacturing plant in Nevada.
2016 Week 40 - LG Chem Battery supplier
Faraday Future has announced that it would use LG-Chem as its battery supplier. The agreement will be deeper than just a supply agreement, with LG-Chem and Farraday co-operating on the electric vehicle battery development in a similar fashion as Panasonic and Tesla. LG-Chem also supplied the batteries for the Chevrolet Bolt at a reported $145 per kWh, a record low price. LG-Chem has made some great strides in energy density through improved battery chemistries.
2016 Week 26 - Formula E Season 2
Nico Prost of team Renaulte.Dams beat Bruno Senna in the 9th round in the second season of the Fiat Formula-e at Battersea Park in England. The series is hotting up with Faraday and Dragon Racing announcing a technical partnership where the EV startup will support Dragon Racing through the next 4 Formula series. The next series starts on 9 October 2016. In related news, Honda announced that it would wait for the series to grow before it participates.
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