Author: Gong Jinhui
“Setting things right and getting back on track is another major turning point for FF.” Jia Yueting described the current situation of FF. This is very Jia Yueting. He is used to boasting every ordinary progress of FF into a world-renowned achievement. Strictly speaking, he was only half right.
Jia Yueting and FF’s major shareholder FF Top (global partner company) have regained control of FF, and the malicious bankruptcy director team has been eliminated. It is indeed a matter of putting things right, and he likes to raise 100 million US dollars in financing. For FF, this is rare good news. But the bad news is that FF91’s mass production has been delayed for the Nth time, and the outside world’s doubts and ridicule about its “PPT car manufacturing” rely on its strength, which means that FF’s operation will still be in a state of only going out and no entry, requiring external capital blood transfusion, heavy Getting back on track will not be easy, let alone ushering in a major inflection point.
The mass production of FF91 has been delayed many times, constantly overdrafting the fragile trust of the outside world in FF, and constantly deepening the doubts about Jia Yueting’s unreliable car construction. Since the car’s public appearance in January 2017, it has failed to deliver the answer sheet again and again in the original mass production schedule. At the beginning, I swore that FF91 would be officially delivered at the end of 2018. In 2019, it was said that it was only one step away from mass production, and in 2020, it became only one step away from delivery.
In July 2021, FF finally ushered in the backdoor listing. At that time, it promised that FF91 would be mass-produced and delivered within 12 months, that is, delivery will start in July this year at the latest. For a long time, the fundamental reason why FF91 could not be mass-produced was that it was in a money shortage, and behind it was the obstruction of financing and the distrust of Jia Yueting. FF’s listing is pleased to raise US$1 billion in financing, which will clear the obstacles for the mass production of FF91. FF said that no additional funds will be required before the launch of FF91.
But plans can’t keep up with the changes. Two months ago, FF changed its tune and said that the delivery of FF91 was postponed to Q3 or even Q4 this year, and said that the company was short of cash and hoped to raise about 325 million US dollars. Recently, the mass production of FF 91 has added more variables. FF announced that it will be postponed. The reason is still the usual lack of money. Fortunately, the outside world has long seen it.
As of the end of 2021, FF’s cash balance was US$505 million, which further shrunk to US$276 million by the end of March this year. This means that FF spent $724 million in just 8 months, mainly for building the Hanford manufacturing plant and repaying various debts. In Q2 this year, FF faced a net loss of $142 million, further shrinking its cash balance and making it so poor that it could no longer meet daily expenses.
FF expects that from September 1 to December 31 this year, the company will consume $293 million in operating cash. Even with the $52 million last month and the recent $100 million financing, FF’s account is still not enough. In order to survive, FF can only find ways to increase revenue and reduce expenditure. Open source refers to continued financing, and throttling refers to layoffs and delayed payments, which also makes it unrealistic to deliver FF91 in Q3 or Q4 this year.
As for when the mass production of FF91 will be postponed, it depends on whether FF can continue to gain the favor of capital in order to live to the end of this year or even longer. However, FF noted that there is no guarantee that these efforts will be successfully completed. In other words, the worst case is that FF will not live until the end of the year, and FF91 mass production will naturally be out of the question.
In my opinion, with Jia Yueting returning to FF, he should not let the worst situation happen, that is, FF will survive, and FF91 may still be mass-produced in the future, but it does not mean that Jia Yueting’s dream of building a car will be smooth sailing. The reason is very simple. In the past, when Jia Yueting was in charge of FF, there were also various unexpected moths, which caused the mass production of FF91 to be delayed again and again. It is not ruled out that the FF under his rule will still bring “surprises” to the outside world in the future.
Today, FF91 has been released for nearly 6 years and has become one of the best mass-produced bouncers. Throughout the entire automotive circle, it seems that only the singularity iS6 can “compete” with it. Even Evergrande, which has been questioned for a long time, is at the forefront of FF, and the Hengchi 5 has started mass production and delivery mode. In this regard, some netizens joked, why is the mass production of FF91 so laborious, is it more difficult to build than an aircraft carrier? It has to be said that FF is really a company without integrity and bottom line, always slapping itself in the face, and Jia Yueting seems to always feel good about himself.
What’s even more bizarre is that although FF has not built a car and faced overwhelming doubts, it can always get capital assistance to pay for Jia Yueting’s car-building dream. Following the listing last year, which raised $1 billion in financing, FF has recorded another $152 million in the past two months. On the other hand, the latest round of financing of Singularity Automobile dates back to May 2020, and Evergrande Automobile has been in a state of suspension. In other words, Jia Yueting is really a genius, and his financing ability makes people have to be convinced. I’m curious, how did he package “PPT to build a car” into a moving story?
Taking a step back, even if the FF91 is successfully mass-produced, its market prospects are not optimistic. You must know that the FF91 focuses on the pure electric luxury car market, and the prices in China and the United States are expected to be 2 million yuan and 200,000 US dollars respectively. This means that FF91 is not a common volume model, and excellent delivery level and service quality are essential, as well as a strong brand effect. Before FF was listed in July last year, it claimed to have received 14,000 orders for FF 91, which was questioned by J Capital Research, a short-selling agency in the United States, who believed that FF could not sell a single car.
In February of this year, a special committee composed of FF’s independent board of directors issued investigation results, pointing out that the FF91 booking data was fraudulent, claiming that 14,000 orders were made, but only a few hundred people paid, which means that FF91 is not as popular as FF officials boasted. Since then, FF has disclosed the real pre-orders of FF91 in its financial report: 401 vehicles as of March 31 this year, and 399 vehicles as of June 30 this year.
It is not difficult to see that in the past year, the number of FF91 reservations has not experienced a substantial increase as expected by Jia Yueting, but has shown a downward trend. It can be seen that users have great concerns about the FF91 product itself and even the FF company, and their willingness to buy is not strong.This is embarrassing. He once said boldly that FF 91 will subvert traditional ultra-luxury car brands such as Maybach, Ferrari, and Bentley, and they will be released in 2021.salesThey are 15,700, 11,155, and 14,659 respectively. The FF91 reservation volume is only a fraction of them, and subversion is impossible to talk about.
What’s more, the FF91 does not know the energy production in the year of the monkey, which leads to the fact that the existing 399 orders cannot be converted into real sales, and there may be a loss of orders during the long wait, which is completely incomparable with Maybach, Ferrari and Bentley, indicating that Jia Yueting’s dream of building a car is still far from success, and all this happened 5 years after he went to the United States to build a car.
In the past five years, Jia Yueting’s car-building has given the outside world the impression that there is a lot of thunder and little rain. Although there is good news from time to time, it has not brought substantial progress, and even stayed in place, which is obviously not conducive to Jia Yueting’s future return to China. You know, in October 2019, Bi Fukang pointed out the key to Jia Yueting’s return to China, and bluntly said that in the future, Jia Yueting wants to return to China to rebuild his reputation and image, and FF’s success will be a prerequisite.
Chen Xuefeng, CEO of FF China, also believes, “If FF can be successful, it can also make a founder like Lao Jia with a negative reputation become a positive person.” But now, FF, which is short of funds, is a problem even to survive, and success is even more important. It is out of reach, Jia Yueting’s road back to China is destined to be long and difficult, even if he personally has the will to return to China. When FF was listed in July last year, when asked by the media if he had any plans to return to China, Jia Yueting bluntly said, “That’s necessary.”
However, I want to say that people who eat melons should just listen and don’t take it seriously. The reason is very simple. Jia Yueting just made a statement to return to China, but did not give a specific timetable. It is equivalent to writing a blank check, which may not be really implemented, so the credibility is not high. What’s more, as he and his partner team regained control of FF, he is now worried about the livelihood of this ill-fated company. Even if the survival crisis is overcome, major events such as FF91 mass production, FF81 research and development, and landing in China are still waiting. Jia Yueting went to push.
Of course, there are still various troubles that Jia Yueting needs to deal with one by one. One of the thorny problems facing FF right now is that the stock price continues to fall, with a drop of more than 90%, which has fallen below the $1 mark, with a market value of less than $300 million. If Jia Yueting fails to boost FF’s share price, and it falls below $1 for more than 30 working days, there may be a risk of delisting, which will put FF in a very unfavorable situation. Previously, FF received several delisting warnings from the American stock exchange due to delays in submitting financial reports.
There are various signs that Jia Yueting will be very busy next, and he is heartbroken for FF. He does not have the conditions to return to China in the short term, and will continue to live in the “return to China next week” joke. So the question is, Jia Yueting can’t build a car and can’t go back to China, so what’s the point of his stay in the United States? Could it be that they are looking for a safe haven for LeEco’s big defeat? You taste, you taste carefully.
In fact, no matter how fancy Jia Yueting touts the FF91, as long as it is not mass-produced in one day, it will always be a flower in the mirror. In today’s increasingly competitive high-end car market, users’ expectations for it will eventually be exhausted. It is foreseeable that in the future, FF under Jia Yueting’s rule is destined to fail to achieve decent results. In addition to being disappointing or disappointing, his personal reputation and credit will be improved or even recognized by the public.
Original title: The mass production of FF91 has doubled, and Jia Yueting can neither fulfill his dream of building a car nor return to China