A False Dream

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As individuals, it’s important for us to welcome new experiences in whichever form they may arrive. This is integral to our pursuit of meaningful and sustainable growth. Now, while it is, by all means, a productive choice, doing so brings some major threats within the picture. You see, when we put ourselves out there in the name of being open, we also end up encountering forces that aren’t necessarily good for us. To make sure these forces don’t cause any harm, we have set up regulatory bodies across the board. With a supervisory eye in place, the world is able to operate in a much safer environment. However, it’s barely as perfect as it sounds. Since the very beginning, the regulatory industry has struggled against rule breakers. In fact, we have seen the said disobedience shooting up drastically on the back of technology’s arrival. The creation’s immense depth offered rule breakers just the protection they needed, and results were, of course, horrifying. After getting worn down by the new age tactics, the governing forces are now turning to a more aggressive approach. We don’t know how it will work in the long-term, but looking at a recent case involving EV startup, Nikola, we can say that it’s doing well for the time being.

As per Securities and Exchange Commission of US, EV startup, Nikola Corp. has agreed to fork out $125 million in an attempt to settle charges, which claimed the company defrauded investors through misrepresentations about its products and technical achievements. The decision to pay up follows the arrest of Nikola’s founder and CEO, Trevor Milton, earlier this year. According to certain reports, the amount will be divided into five installments that will be paid over two years. Apart from making false statements about its product development, Nikola also allegedly lied regarding the company’s financial prospects.

“As the order finds, Nikola Corporation is responsible both for Milton’s allegedly misleading statements and for other alleged deceptions, all of which falsely portrayed the true state of the company’s business and technology,” said Gurbir Grewal, director of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement. “This misconduct — and the harm it inflicted on retail investors — merits the strong remedies today’s settlement provides.”

Nikola Corp. grabbed the headlines when it revealed sensational plans to manufacture zero-emission big rigs using hydrogen fuel cell technology. The buzz around the startup reached another level once automotive giant General Motors expressed a concrete intention to acquire 11% equity in the company. Nevertheless, there will be a big change in the plan when, just a week later, Hindenburg Research releases an evidence-backed report, accusing Nikola of fraud.. The Nikola Corp. is still yet to recover from the report’s after-effects.

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