As expected, Ecotality is bowing out. The electric vehicle charging station maker just filed for bankruptcy protection and plans to auction off its assets next month. Ecotality and five affiliates filed for Chapter 11 protection Monday at the US bankruptcy court in Phoenix, AZ. The charging station company said eight parties would like to bid on its assets, and that it would like to hold an auction on October 9. Closing of the auction is expected to happen within two days.

The bankruptcy filing appeared to be in the making during the past few weeks. Charging station sales were down, its anticipated Minit Charger was shut down and the US Department of Energy (DOE) suspended stimulus payments that Ecotality had been depending on. Making matters worse, several investors recently filed lawsuits against the company. This time, Ecotality stated that "significant liquidity constraints and the difficulty of obtaining long-term financing," make an auction necessary to avoid a "fire-sale liquidation."

Nissan North America will provide up to $1.25 million of financing to keep Ecotality operating during the bankruptcy, as long as the court approves. According to the court filing, the DOE is owed $6.5 million as the largest unsecured creditor to Ecotality's affiliate Electric Transportation Engineering Corp. A hearing has been scheduled for September 19 to start the bankruptcy proceedings, including deciding whether Ecotality could be allowed to pay employees and vendors.

Ecotality has not yet issued an official statement on the matter, and the company's last press release (issued in early August) says it "will continue to operate the Blink Network and maintain our Blink chargers until further notice."

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 1 Year Ago
      I know they mismanaged their figures badly. I'm really sad about that. But we need those chargers working. Please, make sure these keep running someone. Oh, and does this mean I don't have to pay them the $10 in charges I ran up this month? ;)
        Actionable Mango
        • 1 Year Ago
        IIRC, Blink chargers weren't running well even before the bankruptcy and they had poor customer service and a terrible reputation. If there is a silver lining here, at least there is a chance for someone else to do this better.
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Actionable Mango
          The L2 chargers are a wreck. The DCFCs have worked well, despite their ludicrous oversizing. I can only imagine how bad their customer service is.
      • 1 Year Ago
      I hate my Blink charger, they deserve to go bankrupt
      • 1 Year Ago
      these are the ppl who got the 100M from the government before they even got a charger. now they go bust? how much money they draw?
        • 1 Year Ago
        Almost all of it. It was a grant not a loan. They were supposed to spend it. My understanding is less than $10M cash will be recovered. The 6500 stations they put in place (many of which are hobbled to 3.3kW) will will remain though.
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