Ener1 Seeks Reorganization with Stakeholder Support

Dave Herron reports on Ener1 Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings, which was partly instigated by heavy investment in Think electric car.

Published: 31-Jan-2012

Ever since the bankruptcy of Think last spring, Indiana based battery manufacturer Ener1 has been in trouble. Not only was Think a major customer of Ener1, Ener1's large stake in Think was a big bet on that company. As we predicted last November, Ener1 has sailed into rocky waters, a fate that was somewhat obvious last summer. Today we learned the company's debt holders are on board with a rescue plan to steer Ener1 back to safe waters.

As a lithium-ion battery manufacturer, Ener1 is one of the companies President Obama referred to in the State of the Union when he said "I will not cede the wind or solar or battery industry to China or Germany". Obama was referring to the international competition for leadership in the clean technology and clean energy industries. Many see the United States as dithering while other countries take leading and dominant roles in these industries, ones that will be the pre-eminent industry of the future.

Obama has repeatedly said throughout his Presidency that the U.S. must gain a leadership position in these industries, and Ener1 was one of the companies receiving government support in the form of loans and grants. The company received its first grants during the Bush administration, and was a recipient of the large package of grants in August 2009 that was meant to spur development of an electric vehicle industry in the U.S.

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