Solar plant to cease operations PDF Print E-mail
Written by ALEX ASPACHER Sentinel Staff Writer   
Wednesday, 03 July 2013 09:54
PERRYSBURG - The sun indeed set this week on Perrysburg solar firm Willard and Kelsey, an attorney for a company executive confirmed Tuesday.
Robert Kerger, counsel for Willard and Kelsey President James Appold, said the company ceased operations Monday after a large order expected from India was not placed.
The company could reopen quickly if the order came through, but Kerger conceded that was "highly unlikely."
"It's bad timing in the sense we've been trying to get the order closed for six to nine months," he said. "The purchaser couldn't finalize its end of the deal."
Kerger said he's heard from several parties interested in purchasing part of Willard and Kelsey's assets. The next step is to begin paying creditors, which includes the state of Ohio.
"We're working closely to make it as complete and easy a process as possible," Kerger said.
Willard and Kelsey conceded $12.5 million in judgments to the state and owes an additional $2.5 million to other creditors, including attorneys and a company Appold used to temporarily staff the business, bringing its complete financial liability to around $15 million, Kerger said.
One supplier and several members of the company last April converted about $35 million in loans into equity, which is now lost as the company is defunct, he added.
"The big loser is members who invested in the business."
Willard and Kelsey defaulted on two state loans last year - $5.6 million from the Ohio Air Quality Development Authority and $4.6 million from the Ohio Department of Development.
The company's problems entered the spotlight early in 2012, when state scrutiny increased after a layoff of 40 employees. Subsequent financial woes came to the surface after the ODOD scheduled a status check of the business.
Willard and Kelsey once planned to employ more than 3,500 people by 2018, and also planned to construct a 750,000-square-foot expansion of its manufacturing facility, located just south of Levis Commons on Ohio 25.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 July 2013 10:39

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