Michigan-based EV OEM names new leaders after CEO, president resign

By Chad Elmore03 February 2022

Electric Last Mile Solutions names Shauna McIntyre interim CEO, president.

Electric Last Mile Solutions Inc. (ELMS), a Troy, Mich.-based startup that has focused on electric and intelligent mobility solutions for commercial vehicle customers, has announced that Shauna McIntyre, a member of the company’s Board of Directors, has been appointed as interim Chief Executive Officer and president, succeeding James Taylor, who resigned from his role as Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board. In addition, Brian Krzanich has been appointed non-executive chairman of the Board, replacing Jason Luo, who has also resigned from his position as executive chairman of the Board.

The departures follow an investigation conducted by a special committee of the Board of Directors.

Electric Last Mile Solutions Inc. Electric Last Mile Solutions Inc. brought this display to the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January. (Electric Last Mile Solutions photo).

On November 25, 2021, the company’s Board formed an independent special committee to conduct an inquiry into certain sales of equity securities made by and to individuals associated with the company, the legal, disclosure and tax consequences of those transactions, and other issues that arose in connection those sales.

Based on the investigation, the company concluded that in November and December 2020, shortly before the company’s December 10, 2020 announcement of a definitive agreement for a business combination with Forum Merger III Corp., certain Electric Last Mile Inc. executives purchased equity in the company at substantial discounts to market value without obtaining an independent valuation. Taylor purchased equity in these transactions. Luo participated in these and other transactions and directly or indirectly purchased and sold equity in such transactions.

In addition, the Board concluded that the company’s previously issued consolidated financial statements should no longer be relied upon. The financial statements in question cover the period as of Dec. 31, 2020, the period from August 20, 2020 (inception) through De. 31, 2020, the six months ended June 30, and the nine months ended Sept. 30, 2021. In connection with this conclusion, the company, together with its advisors, is evaluating the accounting and treatment of certain equity issuances to executive officers.

McIntyre most recently served as president of Ouster Automotive, following over 25 years working with automotive OEMs. Previously, she served as CEO of Sense Photonics Inc., a 3-D vision company building LiDAR solutions for next-generation transportation needs.

Prior to that, she led Google’s automotive services program, where she supported the release of certain Google products, including Google Maps, into automakers’ new vehicle models. During her earlier years at Google she served as Chief of Staff for Google’s consumer electronics division, which combines Google AI, software, and hardware. McIntyre earlier led the U.S. New Mobility Practice for management consulting firm, Egon Zehnder, and was vice president of Honeywell’s Commercial Vehicle Turbocharger platform.

“We are grateful to have Shauna as interim CEO of ELMS,” said Brian Krzanich, non-executive Chairman of the Board. “She is a proven leader and seasoned industry executive with operating experience at the intersection of technology and mobility. The Board is confident Shauna will ensure a smooth transition, effectively manage the business, and help chart a path forward.”

Taylor and Luo will reportedly maintain consulting roles with the company to help ensure that ELMS delivers on its development and sales pipelines.

It’s a difficult situation for the company, which most recently exhibited at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) on January 5 to 7. During the Las Vegas event it displayed its ELMS all-electric commercial vehicles – the Class 1 Urban Delivery and Class 3 Urban Utility.

ELMS said the Urban Delivery has 20% more cargo space (157 cubic feet) than the current leading Class 1 engine-driven model and targets a payload of 2100 lb. The newest model of the Urban Delivery that was on display has a suite of state-of-the-art safety systems including a patent pending energy absorbing front bumper system, a full suite of driver side airbags, and advanced seat belt pre-tensioners.

ELMS had slated its Urban Utility vehicle for production in the second half of 2022, and it is targeting more than 5700 lb. of max payload and 125 miles of range. The Urban Delivery’s cab-over chassis design can be configured to cover a wide variety of customer use cases including delivery, construction, landscaping, towing and refrigeration.

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