Nikola's founder and executive chairman Trevor Milton stepped down from the electric truck maker following allegations of fraud levied by noted short-seller Hindenburg Research.
Milton, who will be replaced by former General Motors' vice chairman Stephen Girsky, was accused by Hindenburg of orchestrating an "intricate fraud built on dozens of lies", citing data from phone calls, text messages, and emails that it says detail dozens of false statements
Hindenburg also says claims Milton hyped his company's battery technology after becoming aware of issues related to a planned acquisition in October of last year, all of which the 39-year old entrepreneur has strenuously denied even as reports emerged of a Securities and Exchange Commission investigation and a Department of Justice probe into the claims.
"Nikola is truly in my blood and always will be, and the focus should be on the Company and its world-changing mission, not me," Milton said in a Sunday statement. "So I made the difficult decision to approach the Board and volunteer to step aside as Executive Chairman. Founding Nikola and growing it into a company that will change transportation for the better and help protect our world's climate has been an incredible honor."
"As we move forward, I am confident Steve is the right leader to guide our vision at the Board level," he added. "In addition to being an early believer and supporter of Nikola, Steve has more than 30 years of experience working with OEM leaders, suppliers, dealers, labor leaders and national policymakers, and has served as a director of numerous public companies."
Jim Cramer said Hindenburg has been "dead right" on Nikola. Watch the video above to hear why Cramer thinks you should be following in the short-seller's footsteps when it comes to Nikola.
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