Bankruptcy trustees for Italian PHA maker Bio-On SpA are making a fourth attempt to sell the company, this time at a price that is less than half of previous offerings.
Bio-On went into bankruptcy in December 2019. An attempt to auction it in May with a minimum bid of 95 million euros ($106 million) failed.
Now the trustees have set the minimum bid at 42 million euros ($47 million) with bids due Dec. 21. A hearing for the sale is set for Dec. 22.
The assets are described as a single joint lot, consisting of the Bio-On business complex, including all tangible and intangible assets such as the patent assets and the production plant, with attached laboratories, in Castel San Pietro Terme, for the production of PHA-based bioplastics.
More information and detailed documentation is available in the virtual data room opened by the trustees for the purpose of due diligence investigations, to which interested parties will be given access.
Bio-On came under severe financial pressure and legal investigation following a 2019 report from analysts that claimed Bio-On was "a house of cards" and "a massive bubble based on flawed technology and fictitious sales thanks to a network of empty shell companies."
The value of Bio-On shares fell 50 percent and trading was suspended. Italian prosecutors then opened a probe over the alleged market manipulation and accounting irregularities at the company. Five months later, the company was declared bankrupt.