Navitas Systems gets A123's government contracts
A123 looked like the next big thing in cleantech when it emerged as one of the hottest MIT spinoffs about the time the Obama administration arrived. The company had – and still has – promising lithium ion battery technology, but at least one battery recall showed that A123 would have a hard time delivering on all the promise of clean technology.
The company filed for bankruptcy protection mid-year, and it looked for awhile like its technology would remain in domestic hands when power management specialist Johnson Controls made a strong bid to acquire A123. But the Wisconsin company along with Siemens and other suitors were outbid in November by the well-heeled Chinese auto parts conglomerate Wanxiang Group Corp. for $256.6 million.
While A123’s demise falls short of matching the failure of solar startup Solyndra in 2011 – A123’s key government contracts will remain with another U.S. company (Navitas Systems) – the bankruptcy of a promising cleantech startup with solid battery technology represents a blow to the renewable energy sector.
See also previous IPBiz posts on A123, including
A123 battery company being bought by Chinese Wanxiang