President Donald Trump has made it his mission to rescue a General Motors plant located in Lordstown, Ohio that had been slated for shutdown -- but his plan to keep the plant running has some major red flags.
The New York Times reports that the president's plan rests on the ability of a small electric vehicle manufacturer called Workhorse to raise $300 million to get the Lordstown plant operational again -- and the company has not shown it has the kind of profitability that would justify such an investment.
"Between its founding in 2007 and the first quarter of 2019, Workhorse lost nearly $150 million," the Times reports. "It has produced a total of 365 vehicles since its inception, fewer than Lordstown can churn out in a day. Last year, Workhorse’s revenue totaled $763,000, about $62,000 less than the combined salaries of its top three executives."
Workhorse founder Steve Burns admitted to the Times that he definitely has his work cut out for him when it comes to saving the Lordstown plant, but he says his company is a scrappy underdog that is being vastly underestimated by industry analysts.
"It might be the world’s tallest midget, but it’s in the lead," he said of his company, which has delivered vehicles to UPS and Ryder.
But Sam Abuelsamid, principal auto analyst at Navigant Research, tells the Times that he's very skeptical Workhorse has a shot at fulfilling its ambitions with the Lordstown plant.
"The chances of Workhorse’s affiliate successfully getting the plant transferred and retooled are extremely small," he said.
And Republican Lordstown Mayor Arno Hill tells the Times that he is "very wary" of Workhorse's plan and said that he has "lot more questions than I have answers right now."