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Judge approves Fisker asset sale to Wanxiang

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 18, 2014 at 12:23 pm •  Published: February 18, 2014
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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — A Delaware bankruptcy judge on Tuesday approved the sale of the remaining assets of failed electric-vehicle maker Fisker Automotive to Chinese auto-parts conglomerate Wanxiang Group.

Judge Kevin Gross approved the results of an auction last week in which Wanxiang beat out Hybrid Technology, led by Hong Kong billionaire Richard Li, with a final bid of $149.2 million in cash and other considerations.

"The bankruptcy process has been fully addressed," said Gross, who issued a pivotal ruling last month that upset Hybrid's plan to buy Fisker's assets in a quick private sale, using credit based on its secured debt rather than cash.

Wanxiang's winning bid includes about $126 million in cash, $8 million in assumed liabilities and a 20 percent common equity stake for creditors in a reorganized Fisker.

Going into the auction, Hybrid had offered $30 million in cash and cancellation of $25 million in debt that it said it was owed as Fisker's senior secured lender.

Wanxiang had offered $35.7 million in cash and an equity stake for creditors in a reorganized Fisker, with the possibility of additional recoveries for creditors through lawsuits against Fisker, Hybrid and other parties.

California-based Fisker, which had planned to build cars at a former General Motors plant in Delaware, filed for bankruptcy protection in November. The move ended a long, downward spiral that began after it received a $529 million loan commitment from the Obama administration in 2010.

Last year, Hybrid bought the outstanding $168 million balance of the Department of Energy loan for just $25 million, or 15 cents on the dollar, resulting in a loss to U.S. taxpayers of $139 million. Hybrid then moved to take control of Fisker in a speedy private sale with a $75 million credit bid, based on its senior secured debt.

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