Nikola Under the Microscope

New report alleges fraud, executive corruption; CEO resigned Monday

Where there’s opportunity, there’s those who position to take advantage of it. Unfortunately these days, it seems the opportunist pool is diluted with corrupt motivations. The latest example of alleged, intricate corporate fraud—taking advantage of a promising good technology, reportedly—comes from electric truck manufacturer Nikola.

Hindenburg Research, a forensic financial research outlet, released a report containing bombshell allegations against the growing electric fleet provider this week. The article specifically delves into CEO Trevor Milton and the company’s deal with auto industry OEM General Motors—and had an instant effect—Milton resigned on Monday, less than two weeks after the report surfaced. As of 4 PM EST Thursday and this newsletter’s release, the company’s official stance was still, essentially, denial: a Nikola spokesperson told Business Insider the company does not comment on “rumor or speculation” when that news outlet pursued information about a pending deal with BP. Below is a look at the financial implications, for both Nikola and GM, since the fallout began:

We reported on Nikola’s surge, including agreements with Bosch, back in a 2018 edition of this newsletter.

The electric truck maker said the board accepted Milton’s resignation, adding that Stephen Girsky, former vice chairman of General Motors and a member of Nikola’s board, has been appointed chairman of the board, effective immediately.

“Nikola is truly in my blood and always will be, and the focus should be on the Company and its world-changing mission, not me,” Milton said in a statement. “So I made the difficult decision to approach the Board and volunteer to step aside as Executive Chairman. Founding Nikola and growing it into a company that will change transportation for the better and help protect our world’s climate has been an incredible honor.”

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