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A New York investment firm is suing Springdale's NanoMech Inc., contending the technology company owes it $8.9 million in notes, interest and fees.

According to a filing with the Supreme Court of New York, NanoMech entered into loan agreements with Michaelson Capital Partners in April for $5 million and $2 million and then defaulted on the deals by not making payments. In the filing, Michaelson said it entered into a forbearance agreement with NanoMech but the company then failed to meet the terms of that deal, which included among other things monthly payments of $100,000 beginning in December.

Robbie Wills, a Conway attorney and spokesman for Michaelson Capital Partners, said Thursday morning that the firm is committed to rescuing NanoMech and keeping its technology and jobs in Arkansas. The investment group plans to work with other shareholders and investors in NanoMech, including the Arkansas Economic Development Commission, he said.

In a statement, John Michaelson, chief investment officer for Michaelson Capital Partners, said, "Unfortunately, as our filings state, the current executive leadership of the company has repeatedly failed to meet its obligations and is in breach of its agreements."

Michaelson Capital provides customized growth financing to entrepreneur-led technology companies, according to its website.

An email and phone message left with NanoMech requesting comment were not returned by late afternoon Thursday.

NanoMech, founded in 2002 by Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jim Phillips, is a nano-engineering and manufacturing company in the Springdale Technology Park. Under several brands, it develops nanotechnology for use in machining and manufacturing, lubrication, packaging, biomedical implant coatings, and the development of specialty chemicals. Nanotechnology is the manipulation of matter at the atomic and molecular scale.

Mike Preston, executive director of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission said in an emailed statement the commission hopes to see NanoMech become an industry leader nationwide while keeping its employees and investors in the state.

"The specialty lubricants manufactured by NanoMech use macromolecular technology developed at the University of Arkansas to improve product functionality and have the potential to radically change the energy industry, as well as aerospace, transportation and automotive," he wrote in an email.

According to information provided by the commission, NanoMech received about $7.9 million in state funds in the forms of incentives, credits, grants and loans all before 2015.

Between 2008 and 2010, NanoMech was awarded $2.8 million in Equity Investment Tax Credits. In 2010 it received $140,000 from the Economic Infrastructure Fund. The company obtained $5 million from the Governor's Quick Action Fund, with a total net of $3.4 million after repayment in 2013 and $1.6 million in grants from the Quick Action Fund to Arkansas Venture Capital Investment to NanoMech in 2014.

Business on 02/08/2019

Print Headline: $8.9M owed to lender, suit says


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