TuSimple Stock Plunges After Firing CEO Amid Probe Into Ties With China-Based Hydron

TuSimple Holdings  (TSP)  shares plunged lower Monday after it fired CEO Xiaodi Hou following weekend reports that the self-driving truck company is facing a series of federal probes linked to its ties with China-backed Hydron Inc.

The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday that officials from the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) were all looking into allegations that TuSimple CEO Hou had failed to disclose his relationship with Hyrdon and shared technical information with the group that defrauded TuSimple investors.

Hou has also been removed from the company’s board and its Government Security Committee, TuSimple said, amid its own internal investigation into the allegations. 

TuSimple said in a statement Monday that some of its workers spent paid hours in 2021 working on matters for Hyrdon, and that some information was shared with the group as a result, but added it could not say for sure whether it was before or after a non-disclosure agreement was reached with the China-based company. 

“The Company believes based on the Audit Committee’s ongoing investigation that the information shared is not related to the intangible assets or patents reflected on the Company’s balance sheet,” TuSimple said in an SEC filing. “At this time, the Company has not been able to determine the value, if any, of such information.”

TuSimple shares were marked 17.3% lower in pre-market trading to indicate an opening bell price of $5.22 each, a move that would extend the stock’s six-month decline to around 51%.

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