Animation maker

Electric car maker moves to northwest Arkansas

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Electric vehicle manufacturer, Canousaid on its third-quarter earnings call on Monday that it plans to move its headquarters to Bentonville with a research and development center in Fayetteville.

  • The company currently operates in California and Texas.

Why is this important: Electric vehicles are the next big frontier industry. An electric vehicle manufacturer in the NWA could lead to the development of ancillary businesses and the formation of an electric mobility hub.

In June the the company said it will manufacture its boxy vehicles in Pryor, Oklahoma, where it would create 2,000 jobs.

Yesterday, during its earnings call, CEO Tony Aquila said Canoo would receive nearly $400 million in combined tax incentives from Arkansas and Oklahoma to set up operations in the states.

Rollback: Canoo went public in December 2020 after it was acquired by Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC) Hennessy Capital Acquisition Corp. It now trades on the Nasdaq under GOV.

  • In May, the company said it was investigation by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. Tech Crunch reported the investigation followed executive departures, shareholder lawsuits and the loss of an automotive partnership.
  • The investigation is ongoing, and a spokesperson told Axios that Canoo will disclose updates in its consolidated financial statements.

By the numbers: Canoo recorded a loss of $208.7 million for the first nine months of 2021.

  • The company employs 700 people and has a hundred subcontractors.
  • Aquila said the announced operations in the two states will employ a total of 1,200 people, which is in addition to the 2,000 jobs previously announced in Oklahoma.
  • A subsequent press release said nearly 550 of those jobs will be in northwest Arkansas.

The bottom line: Canoo is one of a host of electric vehicle startups aiming to copy Tesla’s success.


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