On February 26, local media reported that Wang Jin, the founder and CEO of China's autonomous driving startup JingChi, has already left the company he set up. The media guessed that Wang Jin's leaving may have something to do with Baidu suing him and JingChi for allegedly stealing in-house technology. Less than one month ago, JingChi just started a normal trial operation of driverless vehicles in Guangzhou.
In December last year, Baidu, China's largest search engine provider, sued JingChi, led by its former autonomous driving chief Wang Jin, in the Beijing Intellectual Property Court for “being infringed business secrets”. Baidu wanted RMB 50 million in compensation and requested the startup to cease using any purportedly stolen technology.
The causes of action mainly included three issues. The accused breached the non-compete clauses to recruit Baidu-related employees and registered JingChi during his tenure in Baidu. Besides, the accused stole business secrets from Baidu by refusing to return computer and printer.
Faced with the accusation, Wang Jin stated that Baidu's lawsuit was entirely untenable. His lawyers would respond factually and legally. In addition, Wang Jin revealed that JingChi's headquarters would move back to China.
Indeed, on December 28, 2017, JingChi announced that its global headquarters settled in Guangzhou Huangpu Development District. On January 30 this year, the startup started a normal trial operation of its autonomous vehicle fleet to the general public in Guangzhou. According to local media, this is the late time Wang Jin showed up in public as CEO of JingChi.
Up to now, Wang Jin has not delivered any reply about his leaving.