Apple Accused of Poaching Electric-Battery Engineers

It's another sign the company is trying to build a car
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 19, 2015 11:47 AM CST
The Apple logo hangs in the glass box entrance to the company's Fifth Avenue store in New York.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

(Newser) – The big rumor in Silicon Valley is that Apple is trying to build an electric car. And while the company isn't confirming, a new lawsuit sure seems to support the idea. Reuters reports that a company named A123 Systems is suing Apple for poaching its engineers. And what does A123 make? Batteries for electric cars. "Apple is currently developing a large-scale battery division to compete in the very same field as A123," the lawsuit says.

A123 says Apple began going after its engineers last June, and it's suing five former employees for breach of contract. One of them allegedly has been helping Apple recruit other former A123 engineers, with the lawsuit asserting that the company has had to shut down various projects as a result. Apple also has lured experts with electric-car experience from Tesla and Mercedes-Benz, reports the Wall Street Journal. Both stories note that while A123 was once a leader in the industry, it filed for bankruptcy protection in 2012.

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