Due to the economic problems that arose as a result of the coronavirus crisis, the Chinese electric car manufacturer BYTON has suspended its operations and most of its employees for six months leaving only a small group active in charge of the decision-making related to company management.
BYTON is one of the most exciting Chinese startups on the scene; however, it has not yet started selling its first model, the M-Byte, which has placed it in a situation of maximum vulnerability. Two months ago, the firm laid off 50% of its workforce in the United States, a prelude to the current situation.
A company spokesperson stated: “As everywhere, COVID-19 has posed significant challenges to BYTON’s financing and business operations. As a result, the Board of Directors and management have decided that the company will temporarily suspend its commercial services in China from July 1 for the next six months.
Operations in other regions have also been affected. During this period, most employees in China will be laid off, while only a small team will be kept to cater to potential business needs. BYTON’s management and shareholders are working closely on a roadmap for the company’s future development.”
The truth is that despite its liquidity problems, BYTON had advanced development of the M-Byte, a model that had been manufacturing pre-production units for some time. Initially, the launch of the electric SUV on the Chinese market was to occur at the end of the year; however, everything seems to indicate that these plans will finally not be carried out.
Will this be the end of BYTON? Taking into account the progress of the project and the interestingness of its proposal from a technological point of view, we want to think that, as has happened with NIO, the Chinese brand will get new investments to guarantee its continuity. In any case, we will be attentive to the future of the firm in the coming weeks.