Jia Yueting (YT), founder of LeEco and now CEO of Faraday Future (FF) was placed on a debt blacklist in China and asked to return home to face his creditors following financial issues. Now, he says that he needs to stay in the US to oversee the current fundraising round of his electric car startup.
As we reported last month, several key members of Faraday Future left to create their own electric car startup backed by money that investors wanted to put in FF, but under the condition that YT takes a step back, which he refused to do.
At the same time, a rumor that FF closed a $1 billion financing round to bring its first electric car to production started in China.
But now, without confirming that they have actually raised that money, YT says that “significant progress” has been made on the financing round.
He made the comment in a statement to explain why he was defying the order from the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) to go back home.
YT wrote on WeChat (via Reuters):
“I am deeply sorry and blame myself for the negative impact of LeEco’s debt crisis,” he said in the statement that was posted on his official WeChat account on Tuesday […] The fundraising for Faraday Future in the United States is making significant progress and there are many tasks I need to push forward in order to ensure the production and timely delivery of the FF91,”
The executive said that his wife and brother will represent him to face LeEco creditors while he stays in the US to oversee those “many tasks.”
FF has been guiding start of production in 2018 for the FF91, but it has been over a year late to raise the financing to bring the car to market.
It seems like the situation keeps getting murkier every day over at Faraday Future. It is resulting in a rapid loss of credibility that is going to be hard to come back from.
But now YT’s comment seems to at least confirm that the rumor that they raised $1 billion wasn’t exactly true since they seem to still be working on this financing round.
I think it’s still too soon to call the FF91 dead, but I think we can say with some confidence that we won’t see it on the market this year as originally promised.
What do you think? Let us know in the comment section below.