Demise of a company is never easy. Having worked for startups over the years I know well how quickly unstable times may approach and how fast a company goes from conquering the world to “we have cash for one more month”.
Last year I visited Vectrix, and American electric scooter manufacturer, on the day the company was to be auctioned off, ending an era of troubled history for this once very prominent EV manufacturer.
Vectrix is a brand I’ve grown accustomed to hearing about after joining my current company. The electric scooter world in the western hemisphere is pretty small and news good or bad does travel fast. I’ve seen Vectrix at trade shows, ridden the VX1 scooter, discussed current and future technologies with Vectrix employees, all with mutual respect toward our companies but with just a hint of competition somewhere in our discussion. We did after all vie for a common customer in the 50cc scooter market.
Vectrix was located in New Bedford, about an hour drive south of Boston. I drove down on the day the hammer was to come down and here are some photos of what I found. Please keep in mind that I’m only posting these as I know that there are quite a few gear heads out there that would love to see what this electric scooter manufacturer may have looked like on the inside. As far as I know I’m not posting anything classified or company secret, please let me know otherwise if something here should be deemed illegal.
I was pretty surprised to see white boards full of writing, coffee mugs still placed by computer monitors, it all looked as if someone told everyone to stand up and leave NOW, without touching a thing. At the same time it also looked like anyone could come in and start production straight away. This location was the Research & Development site for Vectrix, once tested actual production was to be done in Wroclaw, Poland. However there was a very well designed production line in place that looked to be fully operational.
It was sad to see all this go for pennies on the dollar, but the auction itself was pretty interesting experience. I’ve never seen fast talking auctioneer in person and the process of how things were being offered, bundled, or grouped together was interesting all on its own. Never knew you could just sell “everything in room 1”. Overall it took an entire 8 hours to let it all go. Quite a sad ending to years of innovation.