Ex-energy secretary Steven Chu praised Solyndra-style loans in an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle on Sunday, saying “if you look at what got started” the bankrupt energy firm was successful.
When asked if he would do anything differently, Mr. Chu responded that they were “evolving.”
“The Wall Street Journal said it was one of the top 25 companies to watch,” he continued. “And then prices started to crash. And as we got more sophisticated in the loans, from 2009 to 2010, we started to put in measures where, OK, you’re not going to disburse the whole thing. And then you have to have a very tough attitude.”
“Now, if you pull the plug on a loan somewhere in the middle of a startup company, the chances are they might just go into bankruptcy. But on the other hand, if the probability is high that they’re going into bankruptcy, you don’t throw good money after bad.”
“We’re going to have a few more bankruptcies,” Mr. Chu added. “Sometimes it’ll be like Solyndra where you get 3 cents on the dollar. Others, it’ll be 80 cents, or something like that. If you look at what got started and what became bankable, was it successful? Yes. We were more successful than Wall Street. So come on, guys.”