ElectricCar Maker Coda Files for Bankruptcy to Seek Sale (4) Businessweek

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Coda electric car

Electric-Car Maker Coda for Bankruptcy to Seek Sale (4)

By Bathon and Kit Chellel May 01, 2013

The held company’s Coda unit listed assets of as as $50 million and liabilities of as much as million in the Chapter 11 filing in Delaware, today. Photographer: Harrer/Bloomberg

Coda Holdings parent of the electric-car maker by billionaire Philip Falcone, for bankruptcy and will seek to its assets to a group led by a Fortress Group LLC (FIG:US ) unit for $25

The Los Angeles-based company, whose Automotive unit also court protection, listed of as much as $50 million and debt of as as $100 million today in the 11 filing in Wilmington, Delaware. The said it intends to sell its within 45 days.

Coda’s is at least the third by an electric company in just over a A123 Systems Inc. ). a battery supplier to Fisker Inc. another California-based of electric cars, filed for in October. Ener1 Inc. a maker of batteries for electric entered bankruptcy in January

While A123 and an Ener1 received U.S. government Coda didn’t. The company for a $334 million loan in May and withdrew the request in April

“After two years of uncertainty, we to move forward with our plan independent of the loan,” Sloustcher, a Coda spokesman, in an e-mail today.

Production

Coda was forced to seek protection because of production insufficient capital to market and its sedan, and slow growth for the market, which it blames on the of charging stations, according to a by Chief Restructuring Officer P. Madden. Coda will on its energy-storage business, Chief Officer Phil Murtaugh in a statement today.


Sales of the Coda sedan, off China-based Hafei Motor Saibao platform, fell of expectations, with fewer 100 units sold since the market in March 2012, to court papers. Complications the sedan to an electric platform and U.S. regulatory standards production until a year originally anticipated in November

Closely held Coda, counted former U.S. Secretary Henry Paulson as an pitched its vehicle as a “real car with better range, life and acceleration than such as Nissan Motor Co.’s Leaf, Ford Co. (F:US ) ’s Focus EV and Mitsubishi Corp. (7211)’s i-MiEV The compact, which cost before a $7,500 U.S. tax averages 88 miles (142 per charge and can travel as far as 125 miles, to U.S.

Environmental Protection Agency

Shrinking Market

About electric and plug-in hybrid have been sold in the with two years left to President Barack Obama’s of 1 million sales for the industry.

sales of battery-only and plug-in are rising, the pace trails goals set by advocates, including and Renault SA (RNO) Chief Officer Carlos Ghosn, who electric vehicles would be 10 of global sales by 2020.

sales of rechargeable autos 50,288 last year, led by Motors Co. (GM:US ) ’s Volt up from 17,805 in 2011, on data compiled by Bloomberg. for the segment totaled 17,842 in year’s first quarter. vehicle sales totaled in 2012, a 34 percent increase the 10,104 sold in 2011, to data compiled by Bloomberg.

A congressional committee is investigating the Department’s loans for alternative-fuel after the manufacturers have plagued by financial problems.

A123, based in Waltham, used $132 million in grant money to build two in Michigan. Fisker fired quarters of its work force month and missed its first on a U.S. government loan.

Coda electric car

Investors

Coda raised $344 million in equity since its founding, according to documents. Investors included New Strategic Investment Ltd. Capital and Och-Ziff Capital Group LLC (OZM:US ). Aeris Angeleno Group LLC, Harbinger Capital Partners LLC and Holdings LLC, Coda in 2011.

The company owes $77.5 million in notes and according to court papers. owes Hafei, its biggest creditor, $2.7 million. and its affiliates collectively owe about $17 to their 30 largest unsecured

A group led by a Fortress affiliate to provide a $5 million delayed-draw to help fund operation the sale process, according to papers. The Fortress unit act as the lead bidder at a court-supervised and will buy the company for $25 million if no competing offers surface.

The group may bid debt rather cash. Coda requested a May 16 to set guidelines to govern the sale The company wants a deadline of May 31 for offers, a June 3 auction if bids are received, and a June 6 to seek approval of the sale.

Assembly

The Coda sedan’s is built in China through a with Hafei, with assembly in Benicia, California. cells for its 1,000-pound (454-kilogram) pack are from LIO Energy a joint venture of Coda and Tianjin Lishen Battery.

said last year it would produce battery-powered with China’s Great Motor Co. (2333) that be sold under the U.S. name starting in 2014.

The case is In re Coda Automotive, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, of Delaware (Wilmington).

To contact the on this story: Michael in Wilmington at mbathon@bloomberg.net; Kit Chellel in at cchellel@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor for this story: John at jpickering@bloomberg.net

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