Self-driving truck company TuSimple to lay off hundreds of days before Christmas: report

The global self-driving truck company TuSimple Holdings Inc. will reportedly lay off at least 700 employees next week, just before the Christmas holiday.

The San Diego-based technology company, which has operations in Arizona, Texas and China, has approximately 1,430 full-time employees. TuSimple executives want to cut that workforce by about half as the company scales back its efforts to build and test autonomous truck driving systems, The Wall Street Journal reported Friday.

The layoffs would come at a tumultuous time for the company, which underwent a change of leadership in October after reports emerged that the FBI, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the U.S. Foreign Investment Commission (CFIUS) were under investigation. went to TuSimple’s tapes. to Chinese start-up Hydron Inc.

The job cuts are expected to be announced on Tuesday. The Journal reported that TuSimple will “significantly” scale back its efforts to build self-driving systems and test self-driving trucks on public roads in Arizona and Texas. “As part of the downsizing, much of TuSimple’s operation in Tucson, Ariz., where it does many of its test drives, will be eliminated, and the team working on the algorithms for the self-driving software will be significantly scaled back,” he said. the report.

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TuSimple will shift its focus to improving a software product that links self-driving trucks to shippers who need to move freight to offer freight transportation at a lower cost than human-powered trucks, people familiar with the company’s plans said.

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FOX Business reached out to TuSimple for comment, but received no response.

Workers prepare for layoffs. TuSimple CEO Cheng Lu, who previously led the company and returned in November, emailed staff earlier this month announcing that management was reviewing “our staff costs, the bulk of our cash burn,” it reported. magazine.

Lu told the Journal that he plans to “turn the ship right, and that includes making the company capital efficient.”

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“TuSimple is cutting costs and downsizing its ambitions as it recovers from a series of crises this year, including a crash of one of its self-driving trucks in April, the loss of key business partnerships, two CEO changes, a plummeting stock price and concurrent government investigations.” , the report said.

The company loses money. TuSimple reported just $4.9 million in revenue and $220.5 million in losses for the first half of 2022, according to the report. The partnerships with other companies, including Navistar International Corp. and McLane Company Inc., have also broken up amid the controversy.

“McLane is aware of the recent leadership, operational and route changes at TuSimple and is in communication with their team. We are reviewing the business relationship with TuSimple and will determine next course of action in due course,” said the McLane’s chief. administrative officer Larry Parsons told The Journal.

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Former TuSimple CEO Xiaodi Hou

Xiaodi Hou, CEO, TuSimple speaks onstage at TechCrunch Disrupt 2022 on October 19, 2022 in San Francisco.

In October, TuSimple fired its CEO and co-founder, Xiaodi Hou, after an internal board investigation found Hou had shared confidential information with Hydron, a Chinese trucking startup primarily operating in China and funded by Chinese investors. After his impeachment, Hou recruited TuSimple co-founder and Hydron founder Mo Chen to strike back at the board and fire them. Together, they brought Lu back to run the company, the Journal reported.

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The company is now working to comply with US regulators.

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