The Wall Street Journal reported. reported that the company beat Hybrid Tech Holding with a bid of $149.2 million. Wanxiang is a large parts manufacturer that has operated a plant for many years in Illinois.
The auction was ordered by U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington. The other bidder was Hybrid Technologies. The final decision on the bid is up to Bankruptcy Court. The News Journal reports that hearing will take place on Tuesday. Still unanswered is what will become of the former General Motors car assembly plant in Newport. Fisker took control of the property in 2009 as part of the deal that was supposed to have built Fisker cars in Delaware.
The two companies that bid for Fisker. are controlled by Chinese billionaires who want to build automobiles, the AutoBlog site noted.
Hybrid indicated it will remain a lender after not upping its bid. Earlier, it acquired a federal loan for Fisker for pennies on the dollar before making its bid for remaining assets of the California car company. The U.S. Department of Energy decided to sell the loan after determining that Fisker had no chance of building the Fisker Atlantic mid-sized plug-in hybrid in Delaware.
Hybrid’s spokesperson issued the following statement: “Hybrid is entitled to be repaid ahead of the unsecured creditors on account of its security and, in relation to any assets that are ultimately determined to be unencumbered, will share in those assets together with all other creditors. Hybrid will consider taking all necessary steps and appropriate measures to protect its interests in this matter, and remains committed to exploring other long term investment opportunities in the United States.”
Hybrid had been the only bidder for the assets of the car maker that include the former GM Boxwood site near Newport. However, Wanxiang, at the urging of some creditors, entered the process.
The State of Delaware had an interest in the process, since it is a creditor, due to a $20 million financial package that was to have been used to assemble the Atlantic in Delaware.
As the bidding heated up, both Wanxiang and Hybrid pledged to work to build Fisker automobiles at the former Boxwood plant, although automotive analysts continue to see that possibility as a long shot.
Fisker had been slated to build the mid-sized plug-in hybrid Atlantic in Delaware. However, the company, founded by automotive designer Henrik Fisker, ran into many problems after building its first luxury hybrid, the Fisker Karma, in Finland. The company raised upwards of $1 billion in private equity.
Wanxiang already owns Fisker’s former battery maker A123 Systems, which it acquired out of bankruptcy.
Believed to be the attraction for the bidders is the hybrid technology, which uses electric motors and a smaller internal combustion engine.
According to the Associated Press, Wanxiang survived a challenge to the bidding process by Hybrid that went to U.S. District Court in Wilmington. The appeal was rejected.