The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports that the manufacturing assets of Erik Buell Racing have finally been sold to Liquid Asset Partners. A Sentinel article published on January 13, explains that Walworth County Circuit Judge Phillip Koss approved the sale, brought by court-appointed receiver Michael Polsky. This was the third auction to determine the fate of EBR manufacturing assets, and it’s reported that Liquid Asset Partners acquired the assets for close to two-million dollars.
Liquid Asset owner Bill Melvin Jr. has left the door open for EBR to remain in the motorcycle manufacturing business. Melvin spoke with the Journal-Sentinel on January 14, stating that while Liquid Asset Partners itself won’t enter into making motorcycles, it is putting together a plan that could make it happen through a second party. The Sentinel reports that Liquid Asset is currently looking for investors or a buyer for EBR.
Melvin offered this statement in a Liquid Asset press release on January 15:
“I believe Erik Buell Racing (EBR) has established themselves as one of the premier motorcycle manufacturers in the world and has strong potential as a viable business. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent on research and design to arrive at the EBR RS, RX, and SX platforms, which have proven themselves on the racing circuit to be state of the art and in dealer sales to be in high demand. Their bikes, out of the box, can go head to head with the top Italian race bikes. Our sale process will enable the proper exposure of the company and price flexibility that may better fit a new owner to move forward with operations. We believe any plan needs to include the support of the great team of employees of EBR. We will be working closely with management to formulate the plan. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity and any interested parties or investors should contact us immediately.
“There are still a lot of options on the table for a new owner to come in and continue making EBRs. EBR is not a startup, this is an established brand with a huge following across the globe. With the internet, motorcyclists everywhere will know this business is still for sale and we will be open to discussing options. Tell everyone! Maybe it will be crowd sourced, maybe a private investor will step in, maybe we will provide financing for the right team to move forward, or maybe a large manufacturer will acquire the brand with additional due diligence. Our hope is that someone will continue to manufacture these amazing motorcycles and with our acquisition we are adding more pavement to the road so that can happen.”
There was some hope in early August of EBR remaining in business when Bruce Belfer’s Atlantic Metals Group LLC announced its intention to purchase the brand’s assets. Belfer, it’s reported, failed to meet the financial obligations of the deal, requiring a second auction. Objections to that auction prompted Judge Koss to suspend the sale to Liquid Asset Partners until the opponents of liquidation could be heard.
Liquid Asset Partners handled the dismantling of Buell Motorcycles in 2009, and it was expected that it would sell off the manufacturing assets of EBR in the same, piecemeal way as it had for Buell.
Liquid Asset Partners encourages any parties interested in purchasing EBR to call 1-616-719-5917. Potential purchasers will be required to sign a nondisclosure agreement and will then be given additional information on the sales process.
We’ll keep you posted on the ongoing developments of this story as they emerge.