Solyndra Almost Scored Navy Deal

Pentagon pulled out ahead of bankruptcy filing
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Oct 14, 2011 10:02 AM CDT
A security guard walks around an empty parking lot of bankrupt Solyndra in Fremont, Calif., Friday, Sept. 16, 2011.   (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)

(Newser) – Solar-energy firm Solyndra was one of three companies picked for a $1 million Navy pilot program for new technologies—but the Navy cut ties to the firm the day before Solyndra declared bankruptcy. A top investor in Solyndra, RockPort Capital, also sits on the Pentagon's emerging technology panel. When a RockPort principal pointed the Navy to Solyndra, he revealed RockPort's investment in the solar firm, he says, but he didn't tell the military about Solyndra's financial troubles.

The principal, Kevin Kopczynski, says Pentagon rules didn't require him to disclose the firm's financial health. For its part, the Pentagon doesn't "get into the financial aspect" of recommended companies, says an official. Solyndra was one of 161 firms recommended to the Pentagon, and would have received $400,000 for its participation in the program. "However, given how that played out, with their bankruptcy, we never pursued that as a contract," the official tells the Wall Street Journal. Click through for the full story.

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