Tesla’s (now former) Vice President of Government Relations and Deputy General Counsel, James Chen, was recently hired by Faraday Future, going by a recent tweet from the company.
Faraday Future apparently hired Chen to serve as the company’s Vice President of Government Relations and General Counsel — with the intent being for him to head the company’s government interactions in the US and elsewhere.
James Chen left Tesla along with a number of other higher-ups in recent months, with Tesla seemingly doing a spring cleaning of sorts in preparation for the production and launch of the Model 3. The exact reasons for Chen’s exit from the company are unknown. Todd Maron remains at Tesla as the company’s General Counsel.
While the exact details aren’t completely clear, Chen did provide some insight recently, stating: “The vision of Faraday Future involves leveraging the electric vehicle platform in new ways that would appeal to a broad audience. I was attracted by the prospect of being part of a leadership team that wanted to make that vision a reality. This decision was not about Tesla versus FF, but how a new entrant could leverage the many benefits of electric drive technology and move it more rapidly into the market.”
Fortune provides more:
Faraday Future is in the midst of another hiring spree, primarily for a factory its building in North Las Vegas. The three million-square-foot factory is located on a 900-acre parcel at the Apex Industrial Park. The company, which held a groundbreaking ceremony at the site earlier this month, says it will invest $1 billion in the project and hire 4,500 people over a 10-year period as outlined in an agreement passed by Nevada lawmakers in December for $215 million in tax incentives.
Chen is part of a growing group of Tesla alumni to head over to Faraday Future. Nick Sampson, senior vice president of research and development and engineering at Faraday Future, was the former director of vehicle and chassis engineering at Tesla. The company’s global supply chain, manufacturing, and human resources all worked at Tesla in its early years. Most worked at other companies between their stints at Tesla and Faraday Future.
Other recent executive departures from Tesla in recent months have included the Vice President of Global Communications, Josh Ensign; and the Vice President of Production, Greg Reichow. Notably, Tesla recently filled the position vacated by Reichow when it hired the (now former) Audi executive Peter Hochholdinger.
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