Car Culture

Faraday Future participates in federal pandemic loan program

The startup EV maker has struggled for the majority of its life, but received $9 million as part of the Small Business Administration's most recent loan program.

There's a lot riding on this car.
Andrew Krok/Roadshow

The federal government cast a lifeline to small business around the country with the Small Business Administration's Paycheck Protection Program. The government funded the program with $350 billion in loans and grants to keep employees paid during stay-at-home orders amid the coronavirus pandemic, and a familiar face received funds.

It's Faraday Future, the EV startup that continues to face hardships working toward production of its first car, the FF 91. According to a report from The Verge on Monday, the startup received just over $9 million as part of the SBA's latest program to keep workers on the payroll. It received the near maximum of $10 million the program allowed for.

With around 400 employees, Faraday Future can't lay off any of them for the next eight weeks, per the loan conditions. The money can also go toward rent, utilities and mortgage interest. If the company meets all of these conditions, the loan may be forgiven.

To qualify for the loans, a company must have fewer than 500 people on the payroll, which left other startup automakers out, such as Rivian -- the Michigan-based startup working with Amazon and Ford employs around 2,000 workers.

The loan likely comes at a crucial time for Faraday Future despite the pandemic conditions. The company's founder, Jia Yueting, filed for bankruptcy last year. A massive financing deal for the automaker fell through previously, which left it without crucial funds for a new manufacturing plant. It sold its previous headquarters to raise cash quickly. Truly, the startup's seen nothing but hard times so far.

The SBA ran out of money from the $350 billion program last week. Now, it's up to Congress to allocate additional funds as businesses work to stay afloat amid the pandemic.

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