Bankrupt Electric Car Company Better Place Sold For $12 Million After Raising $786 Million

Posted Jul 12, 2013

Better Place is an Israel-based electric car company that has raised $786 million in funding plus $50 million in debt, but they filed for bankruptcy in May.  A company called Sunrise has acquired the company for $12 million.  Sunrise is led by Yosef Abramowitz and the Association for the Promotion of the Electric Car in Israel.  Sunrise is going to pay 18 million Israeli shekels ($5 million) for the Better Place’s assets and 25 million Israeli shekels ($7 million) for their intellectual property.

Sunrise was one out of two bidders for Better Place.  The other bidder is a consortium of companies that includes Success Parking Ltd. and electric car charging company Car Charging Group Inc.

The company tried to use smart-grid technology to create a network of battery swapping stations and other charging points of electric car users.  Charging an electric car generally takes between 4 and 12 hours.  Unfortunately, only 950 cars were fitted with Better Place’s replaceable battery technology.  According to TechCrunch, Renault was the only carmaker to use Better Place.  Individual electric car companies like Tesla are working on their own battery technology solutions, which is why Better Place did not perform as well as they expected.

Better Place chief executive officer was reportedly fired in October 2012.

Sunrise is expected to keep 50 out of Better Place’s 85 remaining employees.