October 30, TuSimple Holding, an autonomous driving truck startup is reportedly to be probed for its ties with the CCP-backed Hydron Inc. by the US agencies including the FBI, SEC, and the Committee on Foreign Investment in the US, that is, CFIUS.
Sources familiar with the matter cited that the officials were investigating whether TuSimple and its senior executives, especially its CEO Hou Xiaodi, breached the fiduciary duties and securities laws by failing to properly disclose the ties with Hydron. According to the report, they were also attempting to find out whether TuSimple shared with Hydron the intellectual property developed in the US and whether such alleged actions defrauded the investors by transferring valuable technology to a foreign adversary. In July, TuSimple’s board also opened its own investigation into whether the company funded or provided technological support for Hydron without informing regulators and its shareholders in advance.
Hydron’s website pointed out the company was established by TuSimple’s cofounder Chen Mo this June and committed to developing, manufacturing, and selling hydrogen-powered trucks equipped with L4 automatic driving technology. Although a TuSimple spokesman said its CEO, who was not a former employee of Hydron, neither received payment from the company nor had a financial interest in Hydron.
However, TuSimple did reveal in its IPO prospectus last year that its backer Sina Corp’s investments in TuSimple had been put under review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS). Sina Corp is an influential media and technology company based in Beijing.