Proterra, the Democrat-connected electric bus manufacturer heavily promoted by the Biden Whitehouse and funded by taxpayers, filed for bankruptcy Monday, much like several green energy boondoggles did during the Obama era.
The California-based company reportedly filed a voluntary Chapter 11 reorganization under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code to “strengthen its financial position” and said it would continue to operate its business as normal during the process. According to Fox News, Proterra blamed various market “headwinds” for its financial struggles.
“The foundation we have built has set the stage for decarbonization across the commercial vehicle industry as a whole, and we recognize the great potential in all of our product offerings to enable this important transformation,” Proterra CEO Gareth Joyce said in a statement. “This is why we are taking action to separate each product line through the Chapter 11 reorganization process to maximize their independent potential.”
“While our best-in-class EV and battery technologies have set an industry standard, we have faced various market and macroeconomic headwinds, that have impacted our ability to efficiently scale all of our opportunities simultaneously,” he added. “As commercial vehicles accelerate towards electrification, we look forward to sharpening our focus as a leading EV battery technology supplier for the benefit of our many stakeholders”
Proterra was backed by major campaign donors like John Doerr, Chairman of venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins, and Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm, who served on Proterra’s board for nearly four years and continued holding $5 million in Proterra stock for months after her confirmation.
“While we are pleased that Secretary Granholm has eventually done the right thing and divested herself from Proterra, many questions remain unanswered,” Michael Chamberlain, the director of Protect the Public’s Trust, said in May 2021 after Granholm sold her shares.
“While Secretary Granholm no longer owns the stock, the American public still deserves answers to why this perceived conflict lasted as long as it did.”
Doerr steered at least $100,000 to Biden’s campaign, the Washington Free Beacon reported. After Proterra went public in 2021, Doerr reportedly held up to 7.1 percent of the company’s shares . Three hedge fund partners who helped raise millions for Biden also held major financial stakes in Proterra.
Biden has boosted the company on multiple occasions since taking office, including a White House event in in April of 2021 in which he took a virtual tour of a Proterra factory in South Carolina to tout his proposed $45 billion government investment in “clean, zero-emissions buses.”
“I want you all to know I used to be a bus driver,” Biden remarked at the conclusion of the event. “You think I’m kidding, I’m not. I worked my way through law school driving a school bus.”
“I’m going to come down and see you in person. So, I look forward to seeing y’all,” he concluded. Biden has stated that he wants all buses made in America to be “zero-emissions” by 2030.
During the tour, Biden touted his plan to provide billions of dollars in federal funding to manufacture “zero-emission transit buses and school buses.”
Earlier this year, he appointed Proterra’s CEO to serve on the White House Export Council, the principal national advisory committee on international trade.
“Gareth Joyce serves as Chief Executive Officer and Board Member at Proterra. Joyce brings to Proterra a long and distinguished career that spans the automotive, aviation, and consulting industries with a consistent focus on environmental sustainability and decarbonizing the transportation sector,” the White House said on Feb. 28.
“Through his leadership, Joyce is growing Proterra’s EV battery manufacturing footprint in the United States and accelerating the transition of transit and other commercial vehicles to zero emission solutions,” it added.
Until recently, Biden had touted Proterra as an American electric vehicle success story.
This isn’t the first time he has promoted a failing green energy company connected to Democrat donor John Doerr, the Free Beacon reported in May of 2021.
The billionaire investor in 2009 landed a spot on former president Barack Obama’s economic advisory board after donating thousands to the Democrat’s campaign. Just months later, the administration approved a $529 million government loan to Fisker Automotive, an electric car manufacturer that considered Doerr’s firm a “significant investor.” Then-vice president Biden announced Fisker’s plan to build cars in his home state of Delaware, promising a resurgence of “American manufacturing.” The company went on to produce its vehicles in Finland and declared bankruptcy within years of receiving the taxpayer funds.
In 2021, Biden’s excessive promotion of Proterra drew parallels to the Obama administration’s infamous green energy investment fiascos. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said Biden’s decision to “heavily promote a business where his energy secretary holds a multimillion-dollar stake” could be “even worse than Solyndra.”
The solar panel company Solyndra went bankrupt after receiving a $535 million loan from the Obama administration. Biden proudly unveiled the loan during a 2009 speech in which he that the “unprecedented investment” would lay the “foundation for long-term growth in the 21st-century economy.”
In April of 2021, Forbes reviewed several other massive green energy projects that failed after being promoted and funded by the Obama-Biden regime.
In addition to Fisker and Solyndra, there was Abound Solar, which blew through $401 million in taxpayer dollars in 2010 “to expand its manufacturing capacity in its Colorado and Indiana facilities.”
The company also collected $18.2 million in EXIM (U.S. Export-Import Bank) export support to India in 2011, as well as $1 million in property tax rebates from Colorado and $12.1 million from the Indiana Development Corporation.
Despite all this investment, in June 2012, Abound Solar filed for bankruptcy, leaving 405 people unemployed and its production facilities abandoned. The company cost taxpayers an additional $3.7 million by failing to clean up 100,000 solar panels and 4,100 gallons of toxic waste.
Another solar cell start-up, Calisolar, wasted $280 million taxpayer dollars, according to Forbes.
Calisolar which later changed its name to Silicor Materials, collected $275 million from the 2009 stimulus and $4.5 million from EXIM, only to fire 80 workers in 2011 and another 36 employees in early 2012.
A123 Systems reportedly wasted $132 million taxpayer dollars.
A123 Systems manufactured defective batteries and declared bankruptcy in 2013, but not before the Massachusetts-based company scored $279 million in loan guarantees from the DOE to refurbish two Michigan plants (among other projects). In the end, it collected about $132 million before declaring bankruptcy.
ABB, Inc., a power equipment maker, collected more than $12.6 million in federal stimulus funds before it went under, according to Forbes.
The company’s Lake Mary, FL, manufacturing plant made switchgears — electrical protective devices that prevent power outages and surges — for Zurich, Switzerland-based ABB Inc.
But the company laid off 160 employees at its Lake Mary facility and transferred the work to a new facility in San Luis Potosi, Mexico.
The layoffs came in 2009 as ABB was collecting stimulus funding while the company should have been creating domestic jobs.
Fox News host Jesse Waters called the Biden regime’s involvement with Proterra a “pump and dump scheme” that involved many top Democrats.
A Pump-and-dump scheme manipulatively “attempts to boost the price of a stock or security through fake recommendations,” according to Investopedia.
These recommendations are based on false, misleading, or greatly exaggerated statements. The perpetrators of a pump-and-dump scheme already have an established position in the company’s stock and will sell their positions after the hype has led to a higher share price. This practice is illegal based on securities law and can lead to heavy fines.
Kamala and Biden’s golden boy just filed for bankruptcy. Taxpayers were funding Proterra, America’s biggest electric bus company, and now the money’s missing. The whole thing was a political pump and dump scheme and top Democrats were all involved. pic.twitter.com/ZPzTgDMn2S
— Jesse Watters (@JesseBWatters) August 9, 2023