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Car-Charger Maker Ecotality Seeks Sale in Bankruptcy

By Steven Church for Bloomberg News

ecotalityEcotality Inc., a maker of charging stations for electric cars, filed for bankruptcy with plans to sell itself at a court-supervised auction to pay off debt.

A unit of the company, Electric Transportation Engineering, listed assets valued at as much as $50M and debt of as much as $500M in a filing yesterday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Phoenix. The company operates a network of electric-vehicle charging stations under the Blink brand name.

In August, the company warned investors that it might be forced into bankruptcy, partly because of weaker-than-anticipated sales and a failure to release a new version of its Minit Charger this year.

The biggest unsecured creditor listed is the U.S. Energy Department, owed $6.5M under a government contract that Ecotality is disputing. The San Francisco-based company also said it has two cost-sharing grants with the agency totaling $126.6M.

The company plans to put all of its assets up for sale at an auction overseen by the court. Before it filed, eight potential bidders signed confidentiality agreements giving them access to Ecotality financial data so they could decide whether to submit an offer.

Because of a cash shortage, the company decided to file for bankruptcy before the auction process began, according to court papers.

Read more at Bloomberg