GreenTech Automotive. Backed by the political elite (Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s brother Anthony Rodham, former Louisiana Governor Katherine Blanco, and former Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour) funded by foreign nationals (namely exiled Chinese businessman Charles Wang), and nearly as profitable as Solyndra. Yes, that Solyndra. But it gets worse.
It started innocently enough, with a few simple overinflated production figures in 2009. Plenty of companies do that, since exaggerated production figures allow you to project exaggerated costs and hopefully bring in exaggerated investments. But the type of investment that GreenTech courts is a little bit different: the type of investment they court, not to put too fine a point on it, is foreign.
The reason they court foreign investments is twofold. First, having primarily foreign stakeholders allows GreenTech to circumvent certain regulatory laws. In fact, it exempts the company from disclosing key information to the SEC – information such as “a description of the company’s properties and business; a description of the security to be offered for sale; information about the management of the company; and financial statements certified by independent accountants.”
This is clearly a benefit to Virginia Governor McAuliffe (who still owns 25% of GreenTech Automotive), who has started multiple companies, more than a few of which have previously been the subject of investigation by federal agencies.
Having foreign investors also benefits Charles Wang, whose Capital Wealth Holdings, Ltd controls the other 75% of GreenTech Automotive. How? Capital Wealth Holdings also controls the American Immigration Center, LLC.
AIC, for its part, offers assistance with the immigration process, generating a profit by charging hundreds of dollars for forms that can be requested directly from the United States Government at no charge. The Better Business Bureau, not surprisingly, has cataloged a veritable laundry list of complaints filed against the AIC for that and other questionable business practices.
So how did Wang and McAuliffe get together? In 2008, Wang made a $50,000 donation to McAuliffe’s political war chest. And in 2009, Wang’s Hybrid Kinetic Automotive Corp merged with GreenTech. This should have triggered an automatic review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, but both GreenTech and CFIUS have stonewalled FOIA requests for records of any such investigation.
But it doesn’t end there. AIC also plays the part of parent company to Gulf Coast Funds Management, LLC. GCFM (the executive board of which includes former First Brother-in-Law Anthony Rodham and former Louisiana Governor Katherine Blanco) is the capital-raising arm of GreenTech Automotive, namely because GCFM’s specialty is EB-5 Visas.
This takes us right back to the foreign investors and the over-inflated business projections, because EB-5 Visas are granted to foreign investors based on the dollar amount of the investment and the projected number of jobs created as a result of their investment. To be processed legally, EB-5 Visas must go through approved regional centers. In a convenient twist of fate, Gulf Coast Funds Management, LLC, is one such center.
Based on the exaggerated business projections put forth by GreenTech Automotive, their investors alone would qualify for a staggering 25,000 EB-5 Visas. This is problematic mainly because current law only allows for a total of 10,000 EB-5 Visas per year. Not only that, but the projected 25,000 on-site jobs (that will each create 11 induced jobs – nearly 300,000 jobs in total) should have been dismissed out of hand as unrealistic considering the fact that the largest automotive plant in the United States employs fewer than 4000 people.
But the investments were accepted and the EB-5 Visa applications were submitted. And when the government stalled the Visa applications in order to investigate them properly, the political contacts came into play. E-mails from McAuliffe detail efforts made by Mississippi Senator Thad Cochran and other Beltway heavy-weights to fast-track visa applications that were tied to GCFM and GTA.
In the years since 2009, GreenTech Automotive has failed to even approach its projections of 25,000 jobs and billions generated in the state of Mississippi alone. Their small office – which, it should be noted, shares space with Gulf Coast Funds Management, LLC – employs a grand total of around 85 people.
The end result, despite any previously stated goals, is that GreenTech Automotive does not function as an electric vehicle manufacturer. Rather, it has become a de facto immigrant-laundering facility through fast-tracked EB-5 Visas for foreign investors whose money does little but line pockets and grease political wheels.