Lordstown Motors CEO AND CFO Resign Amid Funding Crunch, ‘Inaccurate’ Preorder Statements: News

More troubles as the company aims to launch its first electric truck

Lordstown Endurance pickup
Lordstown Motors is facing more headwinds as two of its top executives leave the company with immediate effect. (Images: Lordstown Motors)

Electric startup Lordstown Motors faces new pains Monday.

The Ohio-based company’s stock slid more than 18% on opening as both CEO Steve Burns and CFO Julio Rodriguez announced their departure, effective immediately. Over the past few months, Lordstown has faced increasing scrutiny from investors, regulators and its own board, centered around ‘inaccurate’ statements about its preorders.

As the two executives leave, the board said in a separate statement that it did, in fact, find irregularities about earlier disclosed preorder figures. “Lordstown Motors made periodic disclosures regarding preorders which were, in certain respects, inaccurate,” the investigation discerned. However, it also concluded statements by short seller Hindenburg Research that Lordstown falsified orders is “false and misleading”.

The company’s board named lead independent director Angela Strand as executive chairwoman. She will temporarily take over Burns’ day-to-day responsibilities, until the burgeoning automaker names a new CEO. Becky Roof will take Rodriguez’ place, serving as its interim chief financial officer.

This news comes on the heels of earlier reports that Lordstown would cut down production. In that announcement, as reported by CNBC, the company stated it needs more funding in order to fully start production and get the first trucks to waiting customers. The Endurance — Lordstown’s first effort at an electric vehicle — also faces stiffer competition from the upcoming Rivian R1T, Tesla Cybertruck and Ford F-150 Lightning.

At this moment, no manufacturer has actually made it to market with an electric pickup. But as its rivals get into launching positions, we’ll be watching Lordstown over the coming months. “We remain committed to delivering on our production and commercialization objectives, holding ourselves to the highest standards of operation and performance and creating value for shareholders,” Strand said in today’s statement.

Hopefully, those words will translate into a tangible product for customers sooner rather than later. Our initial coverage from Lordstowns’ reveal last summer is below: