Jewish Journal


October 3, 2012

Shai Agassi, founder of Better Place, is replaced as CEO


Shai Agassi in 2008. Photo by Eirik Solheim

Shai Agassi in 2008. Photo by Eirik Solheim

Shai Agassi, the Israeli-American founder of Better Place, which is bringing electric car charging stations to Israel, was ousted as the company's CEO.

Agassi will remain a member of the Better Place board, the company said Tuesday. He is being replaced by Evan Thornley, who now heads the company's Australia unit.

Better Place, based in Palo Alto, Calif., raised more than $750 million in investments since it was founded in 2007. During that time, the company has lost $490 million, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The company provides charge spots and battery-switch stations for the electric car Renault Fluence ZE, which recently went on sale in Israel.

“It is almost five years to the day since Shai launched Better Place and a natural point in the company’s evolution to realign for its second chapter and for the challenges and opportunities ahead," Idan Ofer, chairman of Better Place, said in a statement.

In a statement, Agassi said, "Five years ago, I followed my passion to make the world a better place and founded a company to materialize that vision. Very few people are blessed to see such a grand vision become a proven reality within a relatively short time frame.”

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