China’s NextEV hires former Cisco CTO Padmasree Warrior to take on Tesla

Chinese electric vehicle startup NextEV, which competes with U.S. electric carmaker Tesla, has recruited tech industry executive Padmasree Warrior to head up its U.S. division as both CEO and Chief Development Officer.

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Warrior, in her 50’s, most recently served as Cisco’s Chief Technology and Strategy Officer until summer. Previously, she had worked for over two decades with Motorola with her last position listed as EVP and CTO.

Warrior’s new company NextEV is backed by Tencent, Hillhouse Capital, Sequoia Capital and Joy Capital. Some of the key investors include Li Xiang, the founder of car-pricing website Autohome, CEO Richard Liu and William Li, founder of one of China’s biggest online car trading platfoms

In September, Li Bin, the Chairman of NextEV said publically that the carmaker has raised USD 500 million, half the amount the company was seeking to raise.

Headquartered in Shanghai, NextEV has a research facility in San Jose, California, and design centers in Munich, Beijing, Hong Kong and London.

NextEV announced in June its first model will be an electric supercar scheduled for release in 2016. The company said that the supercar would feature in excess of 1,000 horsepower and would provide acceleration from 0 to 100 kilometers within three seconds. The startup also plans to produce a range of high-performance family cars.

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