Chinese Company Geely Backs Out Of Fisker Automotive Deal, DoE Strings Get In The Way (UPDATE)
Perhaps Henrik Fisker was right when he told reporters that he did not quit the company because of a takeover by a Chinese company when he said, “it was not specifically about the sale of the company,” because the deal with Geely, the apparent front-runner to purchase the maker of the extended range Karma has fallen through.
Reuters reports today that Henrik’s exit from the company did not play a major role in Geely’s final bid for the company being retracted, but rather that government strings attached to earlier loans made to Fisker make the proposition too complicated to navigate.
Geely, who already owns Sweden’s Volvo had taken the lead over Dongfeng Motor Group Co to buy the company, and had planned on closing the deal entirely by now.
However, the US Department Of Energy said the company had an “obligation to restore capacity and jobs at the firm’s Delaware plant according to a schedule imposed by the US government.” (Reuters) And Geely could just not see their way to fulfill those requirements.
According to sources familiar with the negotiations, “Those obligations are too complicated to handle and seem too risky. The plan’s footprint was too big. It would take a long, long time to fill up the plant with products and restore employment there.”
Since news of Geely’s retraction from the deal, it is speculated that the two other Chinese companies (Dongfeng Motor Group and Wianxang) previously in the running to buy Fisker, may once again come to the table; provided they feel that they can ultimately satisfy the 2009 Department Of Energy loan requirements.
UPDATE: It now seems that one of the remaining Chinese bidders, Dongfeng Motor Group, has stopped pursuing the purchase of Fisker Automotive, too.