DOE loan recipient Abound Solar shutting down
Abound Solar, the recipient of a federal loan guarantee, is filing for bankruptcy protection.
Abound Solar Inc., the Longmont, Colo.-based solar panel maker that received a $400 million federal government loan guarantee in 2010, is expected to shut down its operations today and file for bankruptcy protection.
The company employs about 130 people.
Earlier this year, amid plummeting solar panel prices, it laid off 180 people at its Longmont factory and eliminated 100 temporary jobs as it tried to retool its operations.
A U.S. Department of Energy blog post last week said the thin-film solar panel company was felled by plummeting prices of solar panels, which left the business unable to live up to the terms of its federal loan.
Abound borrowed about $70 million from the loan. The DOE halted disbursements last September.
“When the floor fell out on the price of solar panels, Abound’s product was no longer cost competitive. As a result, the company was unable to meet some of the financial milestones built into the loan agreement to protect the taxpayers,” the DOE blog post said.
U.S. solar panel manufacturers in the U.S. have been battered by the effects of inexpensive silicone-based solar power panels imported from China. Several manufacturers, including Solyndra LLC in California, have filed for bankruptcy.
SoloPower, which is getting ready to open the doors on its Portland manufacturing facility, is another thin-film solar company with a DOE loan guarantee. So far, the San Jose-based company has managed to escape the "DOE curse."
If you are commenting using a Facebook account, your profile information may be displayed with your comment depending on your privacy settings. By leaving the 'Post to Facebook' box selected, your comment will be published to your Facebook profile in addition to the space below.