Erik Buell statement on closing of EBR
EBR has officially closed their doors at the Wisconsin factory in the US awaiting a new receiver to resume operations.
CEO Erik Buell filed for Chapter 128 protection under Wisconsin state law last week citing unexpected turn of events. The Chapter 128 status puts EBR into court appointed receivership.
Whilst disappointed, Erik has shown determination to support the appointed receivers to achieve the best possible outcome with an official statement.
“Thank you for the supportive posts, texts, and e-mails since the announcement that EBR has ceased operations.
“This is a difficult time, and your comments mean a great deal to me personally and also to the EBR team that has done such amazing work over the past few, intense years.
“No doubt, it was an incredible ride, feeling like the longest qualifying lap ever. And, then, just when we knew we were about to set an all-time record, we tossed it in the last corner…
“Keeping with racing analogies, now we need to get back on the track and look ahead remembering all the things we were doing right around so many turns.
“Unfortunately, in the end, we tried to do too much with too little funding, but it doesn’t diminish the accomplishments. We introduced the world class American super bikes of 1190RS, 1190RX and 1190SX, while at the same time doing revolutionary work for Hero on the HX250R, Leap, SimplEcity, iON, RnT and many others, plus concepts never publicly seen.
“It was great EBR innovation and design, and introduced new technology to Hero and its suppliers to provide a real kick start for them. But in the end all of this simply overwhelmed us, and for that we are sorry and saddened.
“I want you to know that looking ahead my focus is 100% on helping the receiver best maximize the value from EBR to benefit all, and I will make every possible effort to get the new organization to where it can support the dealers and customers first, and then help find investment to get back to full throttle.
“Thank you for your support, it means a great deal. Please stay tuned – I cannot predict the future, but always believe the best is yet to come.”
EBR Australia will continue to focus on supporting the brand in Australia and New Zealand.
Our original MCNews.com.au post on the closing of EBR is included below.
EBR in receivership – Erik Buell Racing ceasing operations
Erik Buell was always a dreamer, but there are few dreamers that have managed to turn their dreams into reality.
Even when down and out Erik has managed time and again to rescue his beloved Buell motorcycles, now known as EBR or Erik Buell Racing, in its latest reincarnation.
Love or loathe his creations, you do have to admire the tenacity and drive of the man.
This time though the dream may be over. Only days after his 55th birthday, the avant-garde designer, engineer, ex motocross and road racer, Erik Buell has once again had to close the doors on his Milwaukee based motorcycle manufacturing facility.
“The turn we recently took, after we thought we were moving forward, was unexpected,” Erik Buell said in a statement to the Milwaukee Journal. “We thought we had secured funding, but in the end, we were not able to get the funding in place. Therefore we need to do the best we can under the circumstances for all parties in interest.”
The Milwaukee Journal also reported that ‘the company has more than $20 million in outstanding liabilities, according to its attorney, and is seeking court protection from creditors.’
With colossal Indian company ‘Hero Motorcorp’, holding a 49 per cent ownership stake (purchased in 2013 for $25 million USD) in the company, it seems strange that they did not prop the venture up further, perhaps happy to cut their losses. Or perhaps, Hero will buy the remaining assets, trademarks, intellectual property and use EBR or its engineering in its existing manufacturing facilities throughout India, of which there are many.
But from another statement made to the Milwaukee Journal, Erik Buell is still not ready to roll over and give his 30-year dream away.
“To say this setback is a disappointment does not begin to express what I feel right now. I am personally grateful for the support of our outstanding workers, customers and vendors. While this is a sad ending, I personally hope for a new and better beginning,” Buell said to the Milwaukee Journal.
We have contacted Australian distributor of EBR, Urban Moto Imports, for comment but are yet to receive a reply. Urban Moto Imports also distribute MV Agusta, Bimota, Benelli, Royal Enfield and Confederate Motorcycles throughout Australia.
In conjunction with European partners EBR had recently been competing in the World Superbike Championship. Locally, Victorian Superbike racer Chas Hern has been racing an EBR 1190 RX and put the machine on the podium at the second round of the ASBK Championship last weekend at Morgan Park.