US EV maker Lucid ready to enter China market

Asian Tech Press (June 8) -- US electric car maker Lucid Motors has hired former Jidu vice president Izzy Zhu Jiang as it prepares to enter the Chinese market.

Izzy Zhu Jiang, formerly vice president of user development and operations at Chinese search engine giant Baidu's electric vehicle (EV) arm, has joined Lucid to head the company's marketing operations in China, Chinese media outlet Jiemian reported Wednesday evening.

Zhu's LinkedIn profile shows that he joined Lucid in September 2022 and is the managing director of Lucid China.

The 46-year-old automotive industry veteran said Lucid was just starting to prepare for its entry into China.

Zhu's work experience

Zhu left Jidu in mid-April last year, less than six months after he joined the company.

Prior to joining Jidu, Zhu was the Chief Operating Officer of Ford China's EV division, where he led the team in the local production and launch of the Ford Mustang Mach-E, the American automaker's first all-electric vehicle.

In addition to Ford, Zhu has also worked at BMW, Lexus and Nio Inc.

In November 2013, Zhu joined BMW Brilliance Automobile Ltd., the BMW Group's joint venture in China, as Marketing Manager.

Later on, he became the auto group's first Chinese brand director worldwide when he became the brand management director of BMW MINI from November 2008 to 2012.

At the same time, Zhu was promoted to Vice President of the MINI brand in BMW China in January 2012 for helping to build MINI, a niche brand with annual sales of less than 3,000 units, into a more popular brand in China.

In October 2013, Zhu left BMW to join Amazon China as Vice President of Brand Marketing for Kindle.

And in July 2014, Zhu jumped to Lexus China as Vice President, mainly responsible for product planning and marketing.

During his more than two years with Lexus China, Zhu helped Lexus achieve its first sales target of 100,000 units in the Chinese market in 2016.

In March 2017, Zhu joined Chinese electric vehicle startup Nio, in the role of Vice President of User Development.

Looking at Zhu's curriculum vitae, he is experienced in brand building, user operations and car marketing, especially for the Chinese market, which is perhaps the main reason why Lucid hired him.

Lucid in China

Lucid began hiring in China at the end of December last year for a total of 14 positions in various areas such as digital information technology, hardware engineer, legal, logistics management, supply chain and retail.

Although Lucid did not specify the number of hires for each position, it is clear from the job description that the automaker was focusing on localization services, charging facilities layout and supply chain management in the Chinese market.

Industry analysts said that entering the Chinese market could provide Lucid with a broader consumer base.

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