Better Place shake up: Shai Agassi out as CEO, Evan Thornley steps in
Rough starts and local criticism are nothing new in the green car start-up world, and it looks like Better Place is going through another all-too-familiar trope: CEO shake-up.
Better Place's CEO, Shai Agassi, has been "removed" by the company's board of directors in a surprise act. The previous CEO of Better Place Australia, Evan Thornley, has taken over for Agassi. Agassi will remain on the board.
Since starting Better Place, Agassi has been a strong proponent of plug-in vehicles (see examples here, here and here). He hasn't always been right about his predictions, but he's certainly been out there promoting the cause. Trouble is, Better Place hasn't had the success some expected - even though it has deployed plug-in vehicle charging stations and battery swap stations in multiple countries - and so now the official word is that Better Place owes "Shai our gratitude for turning his powerful vision into a reality," but it's time to move on. The Times Of Israel says Shai's reduction of rank is tied to "the company's financial problems, which are rooted in difficulties in selling cars and setting up the necessary infrastructure to support them." The Times says Better Place has lost around $437 million U.S. since it got started five years ago, $128 million of that since in 2012 alone.
Thornley has been CEO of Better Place Australia for four years, and previously worked to develop "EV Engineering Ltd., a collaborative venture between global automotive leaders, to develop and create switchable-battery electric car technology."Permalink | Email this | Comments
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