Rivian Automotive, Inc- an American electric vehicle manufacturing startup, has seen the departure of Kenyan Charles Mwangi as one of its top executives.
The firm said Mwangi’s exit is part of the EV startup’s broader management changes as the company confronts supply constraints and other production hurdles.
Rivian has had issues with suppliers as the startup struggles to scale up output of its first three models.
Charles Mwangi, a former Tesla Inc. executive who has been manufacturing-engineering chief at EV startup for the past two years, decided to leave the company, a spokeswoman said.
In that role, Mwangi was overseeing robotics and other equipment used to build cars at the company’s factory in Normal, Illinois.
“We have updated our product roadmap to drive focus and are making organizational changes to ensure rapid progress to keep pace with our projected growth,” said Rivian CEO R.J. Scaringe in an internal email quoted earlier by Bloomberg.
Rivian Automotive production plans
The firm, founded in 2009, is building an electric sport utility vehicle (SUV) and pickup truck on a platform that can support future vehicles or be adopted by other companies.
An electric delivery van is also being built as part of a partnership with Amazon. Rivian started deliveries of its R1T pickup truck in late 2021. As of March 2022, the delivery van and R1S SUV were still in development.
The company plans to build an exclusive charging network in the United States and Canada by the end of 2023.
Rivian is based in Irvine, California, with its manufacturing plant in Normal, Illinois, and other facilities in Palo Alto, California; Carson, California; Plymouth, Michigan; Vancouver, British Columbia; Wittmann, Arizona; and Woking, England. Additionally, Rivian has plans to build another US$5 billion factory in Georgia.
The company raised over US$13.5 billion in financing following its IPO in November 2021, lifting its profile as a major competitor to Tesla.