Sono files for bankruptcy: Solar car buyers fear for their money


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Sono files for bankruptcy
Solar car buyers fear for their money

Not enough investors, not enough potential buyers: the developers of the solar car “Sion” have filed for bankruptcy. The Munich-based company has failed in its plan to return around 50 million euros to all customers who have paid for a solar-powered car.

Those who were previously interested in the solar car “Sion” have to worry about the money they have paid in advance. The developer Sono Motors GmbH fled under the protective shield of insolvency law, as the Munich company announced. The plan to return about 50 million euros in installments to all customers who reserved and paid for the solar-powered car has apparently failed.

Sono stopped the solar car project in February and laid off 250 employees because there were no investors and not enough potential buyers for the car. Instead, Sono wanted to limit itself to the business with solar cells for buses, refrigerated trailers or cars from other manufacturers.

A financier initially promised the money for the repayment, but due to the uncertainty on the capital market “this financing did not materialize,” the company said. Discussions with other financial partners also came to nothing. According to earlier information, Sono had a good 44,000 pre-orders for its electric car with solar cells on the roof and doors by the beginning of this year. This should come onto the market in 2024 at a unit price of 30,000 euros.

Now Sono Motors wants to restructure itself in a protective shield procedure because of over-indebtedness and impending insolvency. The procedure had been registered with the district court in Munich, according to Sono. The contaminated sites from the Sion program are too high to deal with on your own, said restructuring expert Dirk Schoene from the Dentons law firm, who is accompanying Soni in the process. The management was confident that the restructuring would succeed.

“Detours are part of founding a company,” said co-founder and managing director Jona Christians. The shareholders are also among the losers. With the protective shield procedure, the parent company Sono Group, which is listed on the US technology exchange Nasdaq, loses access to its only operating subsidiary. The Sono Group therefore filed for insolvency proceedings under self-administration. On the day of the IPO in November 2021, the company was valued at $2.6 billion.

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