The Solyndra Story

| Sun Sep. 25, 2011 11:34 AM EDT

If you're interested in reading a bit of background on Solyndra now that it's become a political football, the LA Times has a pretty good piece in today's paper:

To grasp the saga of Solyndra's rapid rise and even faster fall, one has to understand the dazzling appeal of its product. The company's advancement in solar power was hailed as an invention so brilliant that it blinded everyone to the truth: Solyndra never had much of a chance in a fast-changing market.

"It was revolutionary," said Walter Bailey, a former Macquarie Capital investment banker who specialized in green technology and visited Solyndra in 2008. "You had some of the smartest money in the world getting behind it. It was a real company with a huge factory and an extremely unique product.

"The only problem," said Bailey, now a senior partner at boutique investment bank Focus Capital in New York, "was that it never penciled out."

There's nothing in this piece about the politics of Solyndra, just a straight-ahead explanation of who they were, why their technology was so dazzling, and why they failed. It's worth a read if you're not already up on all this.