Second Chinese bidder for Fisker Automotive pulls out of buyout talks
Reportedly both the Geely Group and the Dongfeng Motor Corp. have now pulled out of bidding for Fisker Automotive, further complicating that company's efforts to rescue the company. Fisker Automotive has had a rough time of it since December 2011, and is reportedly seeking suitors for a buyout or other rescue package. According to a China Daily report both of the leading bidders have pulled out of talks, adding to the complications following Henrik Fisker's resignation of the company he cofounded.
Neither Geely nor Dongfeng like the conditions imposed by the U.S. Government, via the Department of Energy loans, on the use of the former GM factory in Delaware. That factory is owned by Fisker, and was to be the manufacturing location of the Fisker Atlantic. Fisker's staff at that location were laid off a year ago when the Dept. of Energy froze the loan program following Fisker's repeated failures to meet business development and production milestones.
According to the China Daily report, Fisker's proposal to bidders includes a proposal that any sale include tapping the remaining portion of the Dept. of Energy loans. However those loans carry requirements of manufacturing volume and hiring, at the factory in Delaware. Earlier in the week Geely was reported to have concerns that the Dept. of Energy requirements were too aggressive.
The bids from Geely and Dongfeng are reported to have been worth $200 to $300 million. Over its lifespan, Fisker's management have raised over $1 billion in private investment in addition to the approximately $200 million of the Dept. of Energy loans received by the company.
Chinese companies have been aggressively buying up green technology companies while at the same time China's government is pushing hard on green technology development. That trend is behind a recent statement by Nissan's CEO Carlos Ghosn that China could be the country to lead the world on electrified vehicle adoption.