SAN DIEGO — Autonomous trucking technology company TuSimple has announced plans to reduce its workforce by 25% as the company restructures.
Company officials made the announcement on Wednesday, Dec. 21.
The majority of the restructuring is in the company’s U.S. operations as it continues its plan to explore strategic alternatives for its Asia business, including a divestiture, according to a news release.
A total of 80% of the remaining staff are in research and development, working as engineers who play a role in hardware and software resilience, reliability, safety and information security.
TuSimple currently employs 1,430 people full-time globally.
TechCrunch reports that talk of layoffs at TuSimple has been going on for weeks, particularly following the end of the company’s deal with Navistar to co-develop purpose-built autonomous semi-trucks.
TuSimple rescinded offers to interns to join the company, and posts on LinkedIn and Blind have mentioned “huge layoffs.”
TuSimple plans to actively work with key shipping partners to operationalize its autonomous technology. And, to help ensure capital efficiency, the company also plans to scale back freight expansion, including unprofitable freight lanes and respective trucking operations.
“Trucking operations along those lanes utilize previous generation autonomous software that provides limited value to the company’s on-going technology development,” the news release stated.
Returning to lead TuSimple one month ago, CEO Cheng Lu pledged to set the company on the path towards stability and long-term success.
Lu’s predecessor and TuSimple’s founder Xiaodi Hou was fired following an internal probe that showed certain employees had ties and shared confidential information with Hydron, a China-backed hydrogen-powered trucking company.
TuSimple is still facing multiple federal investigations related to its relationship with Hydron.
In the past 30 days, TuSimple has named three independent directors to the board, reconstituted its board committees, including an independent audit committee in compliance with Nasdaq requirements and stabilized the management team, including naming its interim CFO Eric Tapia as permanent CFO.
In addition, Mike Mosier, one of the new independent board members, was named as TuSimple’s Security Director – a position which required review and a notice of non-objection from CFIUS.
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