Dec 3, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Koch Industries buys GOP Senate candidate's company

The Wichita, Kansas, headquarters of Koch Industries.
Koch Industries Inc. headquarters, Wichita, Kan., Nov. 14, 2005. Photo: Larry W. Smith/Bloomberg via Getty Images.

A division of industrial giant Koch Industries has bought Senate hopeful Jim Lamon's company, likely providing a cash infusion for the Arizona Republican as he pours huge sums of his own money into the race.

Why it matters: Lamon is vying for the GOP nomination to take on Democratic Sen. Mark Kelly in what is expected to be one of the most competitive — and expensive — races of the 2022 midterms.

  • There's no indication the deal was influenced by any political considerations. Americans for Prosperity Action, the leading political arm of the Koch network, has not reported any expenditures in the Arizona Senate race this year.
  • Lamon has already loaned his campaign $5 million and said he is prepared to spend 10 times that sum.
  • He gave another $2 million to a conservative voter registration group operating in Arizona in the days before he entered the race.

Driving the news: Koch Engineered Solutions announced this week it has acquired Lamon's Scottsdale-based solar energy company, DEPCOM Power.

  • "The acquisition of DEPCOM is a milestone for our business" that "enables our entry into the fast-growing renewables market," KES president David Dotson wrote in an internal email.
  • Neither KES nor DEPCOM disclosed the value of the deal, but Lamon said publicly after the sale was announced that DEPCOM was worth about $1 billion.
  • KES is a subsidiary of Koch Industries, which is owned by libertarian billionaire Charles Koch.

Between the lines: Lamon, who founded DEPCOM in 2013, held equity in the company worth more than $50 million as of August, according to his candidate financial disclosure form. That's the highest value range candidates are required to disclose.

  • He has already signaled income from the DEPCOM sale could make its way to his campaign.
  • Lamon's campaign did not respond to inquiries from Axios.
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