Breaking news: HiPhi saved by US company

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According to breaking news HiPhi has been rescued by iAuto through a comprehensive strategic cooperation agreement. The plan sees the investment of 1 billion USD into Human Horizons, the owners of the HiPhi brand. According to a press release the deal was signed on May 10 but the news is only breaking now.

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Cooperation between the two parties will allow HiPhi to resume production to fulfill sales orders. Also according to the very vaguely worded press release it will allow “cooperation related to equity restructuring and mergers and acquisitions, technology and research and development, engineering cooperation, brand and marketing integration at home and abroad, supply chain and manufacturing integration and a series of cooperation covering the vehicle business sector.”

The deal seems to involve the creation of a comprehensive restructuring plan using the 1 billion USD first round of funds. Both parties are trying to complete the compliance transaction process before the release of the 2024 semi-annual report. Human Horizons will be receiving support from iAuto in the form of funds, technology and orders.

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The Human Horizons HiPhi X pictured in Lujiazui, Pudong, Shanghai, China. The car is a new upmarket EV with the Tesla Model X in its sights.

The big question is who are iAuto? According to the press release they are a leading automotive platform incorporated under the State of Delaware, USA. However a search for the company uncovers very little digital footprint with the presumed website for the company displaying an “Our Website is Currently Undergoing Maintenance” sign. Allegedly founded by a group of financial investment and advisory professionals with extensive experience in the automotive industry the company seems to focus on clean energy vehicles. The press release makes a number of lofty statements regarding the goals of the company. In addition the company holds patents related to low-temperature controllable fusion variable modules in micro-turbine generators, along with something referred to as a super drive system which is meant to have five times better performance than a conventional drive system.

Preview unveiling of the new HiPhi Z in Shanghai, China. A luxury EV billed as a digital GT and set for production in 2022.

HiPhi has been struggling for survival since February when production halted. Founder Ding Lei at the time said that realistically there was only a three month period to turnaround the company. Much speculation surrounded Changan taking over the company but this appears to have come to nothing.

Editor’s note:

If this deal really has saved HiPhi we are very happy as they are one of the few NEV companies in China that are bringing something different to the table. However, there seem to be a lot of questions over who exactly iAuto actually are and what they do. Perhaps most importantly do they actually have the financial means to make such a deal?

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The timing is also strange given that iAuto is meant to be a US company and that recently the US announced it would increase tariffs on Chinese EVs to 100%. Strangely the only press release we could find was also in Chinese.

Sources: press release, Fast Technology

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