Alevo Group names new interim CEO as ally of Russian investor departs

This 2016 file photo shows an Alevo production line in Concord.
This 2016 file photo shows an Alevo production line in Concord.

Alevo Group, the Swiss battery maker whose U.S. arms filed for bankruptcy protection in August, said Thursday that it had named Peter Heintzelman interim group CEO, replacing the recently departed Vlad Baumgertner.

The company announced ambitious plans for a production facility in Concord in 2014, vowing to create hundreds of jobs through its revolutionary energy-storage technology. But production and hiring lagged those projections.

On Aug. 18, the company said it was laying off its 290 workers in Concord as part of a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing. Alevo has said it plans to sell off assets.

Alevo named Heintzelman chief financial officer in January, and he will continue to hold the CFO title.

In March, Alevo (pronounced a-lay-vo) gained global attention with the news that Russian oligarch Dmitry Rybolovlev had invested in the company. Rybolovlev made his mark on Alevo by bringing in former colleagues, including Baumgertner, who had led Rybolovlev’s former company, Uralkali, from 2003 to 2013.

Alevo said in a news release that Heintzelman “has been instrumental in leading the organization from a financial and operational perspective amidst some particularly challenging and uncertain times,” adding his “appointment will enable the organization to benefit from his leadership during its post-Chapter 11 filing in the US and its continued efforts in Switzerland and Germany.”

Rick Rothacker: 704-358-5170, @rickrothacker