End of the road for Hyperloop startup Arrivo

Arrivo high-speed transport system

Arrivo high-speed transport system

Hyperloop startup company Arrivo promised the “end or traffic” with its futuristic transportation method. Said dream has reached the end of the road, however.

The Verge reported last Friday that Arrivo has officially folded after it failed to secure enough funding to proceed with its plans for an above-ground Hyperloop-style transportation system. The publication talked to two former employees who spoke on the condition of anonymity. Both confirmed all employees were furloughed in November, and half were laid off at the end of last month. Any remaining employees were laid off last Friday via text message or phone calls.

Former SpaceX engineer Brogan BamBrogan founded Arrivo in 2017. The company took Tesla, SpaceX, and Boring Company CEO Elon Musk’s idea for a Hyperloop and tweaked the implementation. Instead of high-speed transit underground, Arrivo imagined a transport system with specialized autonomous vehicles that would run alongside highways on a magnetized track. Hyperloop’s purported technology uses low-pressure tubes.

Arrivo high-speed transport system

Arrivo high-speed transport system

BamBrogan was formerly with Hyperloop One, known today as Virgin Hyperloop One after a substantial investment from Richard Branson. The Arrivo founder left the company after a legal dispute that ended in lawsuits on both sides. BamBrogan and the company eventually settled.

Arrivo had plans to build a test track in Colorado and a feasibility study was ongoing, according to Amy Ford, the chief of advanced mobility for Colorado’s Department of Transportation. However, she confirmed to The Verge that the department had not heard from the company in about a month at the time of the report from The Verge. The test track was supposed to cost $ 15 million to construct outside of Denver.

Although Arrivo secured a $ 1 billion line of credit from a Chinese infrastructure company by the name of Genertec, a lack of Series A funding led to the company’s collapse. Genertec pledged the line of credit to Arrivo’s partners to build out a full transportation system and was not a direct investor in the company.

Arrivo high-speed transport system

Arrivo high-speed transport system

Aside from the money troubles, employees spoke of tense work environments and a lack of guidance. An anonymous review for the company on Glassdoor mentioned BamBrogan’s use of an axe to relieve stress, which the two anonymous employees confirmed. Apparently, BamBrogan would punch holes into walls with the axe.

Arrivo’s demise leaves Hyperloop One and Hyperloop TT as the remaining companies focused on bringing the technology to light. The Boring Company also envisions a futuristic transportation method similar to Arrivo’s stillborn concept.

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