- Canoo is a young electric vehicle startup racing to compete with Rivian and Lucid.
- The company has seen a number of exits from top talent in recent months.
- Now its manufacturing and investor relations executives have left, sources told Insider.
Two vice presidents have left electric vehicle startup Canoo in the past few weeks, the latest departures in a talent exodus that has already seen the exits of at least four upper-level executives in recent months.
VP of manufacturing Frank Faga and VP of investor relations Kamal Hamid have both left the company, three sources with direct knowledge told Insider.
The departures follow the recent exits of Bill Strickland, a cofounder and head of vehicle programs; Alexi Charbonneau, cofounder and powertrain chief; Peter Savagian, chief technology officer; and Mark Aikman, global chief marketing officer.
Faga, an auto industry veteran, joined Canoo following a long career in automotive manufacturing that included stints with Chrysler, Daimler-Benz, and rival EV startup Fisker Automotive.
Hamid joined Canoo in January 2021 from online car buying marketplace Cars.com. He had previously worked with Canoo CEO Tony Aquila as head of investor relations at Aquila’s software company, Solera Holdings.
Faga and Hamid did not comment before publication. A Canoo spokesperson confirmed both departures. The spokesperson said the company wishes both well, and added, “When you have smart, talented people, this sometimes happens.”
Fifteen former and current Canoo employees and individuals who have worked with the company have told Insider in recent weeks that they feel Aquila has driven away key company leaders, including founders and top engineers, since taking the helm last April. Many also fear that company management has been padded with non-automotive industry expertise that could serve as a barrier to it meeting its lofty production target range of 3,000 to 6,000 vehicles this year.
Aquila told Insider last month that not everyone will agree with the company’s vision or his strategy of hiring more software talent.
“If I surrounded myself with a bunch of Detroit guys that are used to moving steel because it made them money, I wouldn’t get what I want,” he said. “I’m not interested in building the next GM or Ford.”