Chinese content and devices company LeEco is tipped to be planning a massive reduction in its US headcount, days after Jia Yueting (pictured) resigned as CEO of the cash-strapped company.
The company is working on a plan to cut its US staff to 60 from a peak of about 500 earlier in 2017, Reuters reported. Jia originally hoped to grow the headcount at the US operation to 12,000, the news outlet noted.
Although stepping down from the CEO role, Jia will remain as chairman of the company, focusing on corporate governance, strategic planning, core product development and improving efficiency of corporate decision making, the company said in a stock exchange filing.
LeEco named VP Liang Jun as its new CEO. Liang, a veteran at Lenovo, joined LeEco in 2012. Several other executives have quit in recent months, including its CFO and head of its ride-hailing app, Financial Times reported.
Jia acknowledged in November the company, which moved aggressively into smartphones and smart TVs in many markets, was expanding “too fast” and its capital and resources were not keeping pace. A month later LeEco said it was planning to restructure its business following the suspension of trading of its shares on the Shenzhen Exchange.
LeEco significantly reduced orders for components as it moved away from a price cutting strategy aimed at boosting shipments, DigiTimes reported.
In April it abandoned a planned $2 billion acquisition of US consumer electronics maker Vizio due to “regulatory headwinds”, as it fell short of a $100 million revenue goal in the US.
The decision followed reports in late March the Vizio deal was in trouble because LeEco faced funding problems after rapid growth, and encountered difficulties closing the deal due to new restrictions on capital transfers out of China.
Before its move into smartphones and electric vehicles, LeEco was best known in China for its online video-streaming platform LeShi, which is a listed subsidiary of LeEco.