Cash-strapped electric-car startup Faraday Future is bringing in a BMW veteran to get its finances in order

Stefan krause
Stefan Krause Faraday Future

Faraday Future, the struggling tech startup that seeks to build autonomous, electric vehicles is bringing on a Deutsche Bank and BMW veteran to help the company sort out its finances.

Faraday announced Stefan Krause’s hiring in a press release this week.

Krause will serve as global chief financial officer for Faraday Future, taking charge of Faraday’s corporate finance division and handling investor relations and capital management — areas in which Faraday has struggled in the last year.

The Southern California-based upstart has been plagued with executive departures and dwindling bank accounts in recent months. The turmoil led to lots of bad press for Faraday leading up to its appearance at the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January.

The event unfolded under the shadow of multimillion dollar lawsuits from some of Faraday’s suppliers and led to a few embarrassing moments for company honchos who were showcasing the company’s first vehicle, the FF91.

Current and former employees told Busines Insider at the time that Faraday’s finances were on the brink.”If CES doesn’t bring in fresh investors, it’s over between February and May,” one source close to the company said at the time.

Jia Yueting, Faraday’s only publicly known investor is a tech billionaire who heads the Chinese electronics company LeEco. Jia has spoken of his own money problems as recently as October.

Some of Faraday’s money troubles have been blamed on the company’s previous chief financial officer, Chaoying Deng. Chaoying remains at Faraday as the director of finance. She was the company’s first CEO of record and also acted as the company’s president and treasurer for a time. Sources close to the company suggested to Business Insider previously that Faraday’s books fell into disarray under her leadership.

Faraday Future
(L-R) Faraday Future Vice President of Design Richard Kim, LeEco Founder and CEO YT Jia and Faraday Future Senior Vice President of Research and Development and Engineering Nick Sampson Ethan Miller/Getty Images

A Faraday Future spokesman told Business Insider Friday that Chaoying would now report to Krause.

Krause was once a target of a tax-evasion investigation in the early 2000s. He was one of several Deutsche Bank executives who came under scrutiny in a case that dated back to 2010. The allegations involved people suspected of trying to avoid sales tax on the trading of carbon tax certificates, The New York Times reported in 2012.

Law-enforcement officials raided Deutsche Bank offices during the inquiry. Krause and other executives who were being investigated denied any wrongdoing.

Faraday Future touted Krause’s background in corporate fundraising. He is credited with helping raise $US22 billion in capital during his time at Deutsche Bank between 2008 and 2015.

Fundraising is an important next-step for Faraday Future as it tries to court new sources of cash to fund it many initiatives. Faraday’s stalled factory project awaits a restart in North Las Vegas, Nevada, the FF91 needs to be readied for production and, importantly, Faraday’s bills need to be paid.

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