Obama-backed Fisker Automotive laying off most rank-and-file employees, exploring bankruptcy

posted at 2:01 pm on April 5, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

The Solyndra-fication of the Department of Energy loan-guaranteed Fisker Automotive, whose many merits as a hybrid sports car maker were once hailed throughout the land, is almost complete. The supposedly green-tech company announced that they intend to lay off nearly all of their regular employees on Friday, and that they will maintain about 53 senior managers and executives — mostly to pursue buyers for the company’s assets. The WSJ reports:

Struggling electric-car maker Fisker Automotive Inc. is dismissing 150 of its remaining 200-employee staff on Friday, according to a person familiar with the matter. …

The company has been looking for a large investor or acquirer, but talks with at least two interested parties fell apart last month. …

The U.S. government, a big lender to Fisker, holds collateral on the company’s assets and could influence the direction of any bankruptcy. …

Fisker has delivered around 2,000 vehicles globally and at one point had 50 U.S. dealers, though the number has dwindled as its financial problems have increased. It hasn’t built a car since July and its primary battery supplier, A123 Systems Inc., filed for bankruptcy protection and was purchased by Chinese auto parts maker Wanxiang Group Inc.

A123 Systems, you’ll remember, was once upon a time another Obama DOE-backed venture. Winning.

Shockingly, despite the Obama administration’s very best market-interfering and subsidizing intentions, the hybrid company just didn’t take off the way it was supposed to, dagnabit — so it’s really comforting that the DOE is getting back to dishing out those stimulus funds, no?

Despite a fiscal cliff and sequestration worries, more than $1.2 billion in cash payments for energy projects (in lieu of tax credits) have been issued by the Department of Treasury and Department of Energy since January 1, according to documents from the U.S. Treasury.

Through February 14, $1,254,769,726 was distributed by the 1603 program to 435 solar, wind, and other renewable energy projects. The vast majority of the projects—381—were for solar electricity. The cash payments represent up to “30% of the project’s total eligible cost basis” in lieu of investment tax credits.

The average 1603 payment made in the first six weeks of 2013 for all projects was $2.88 million, with awards ranging from $120.2 million for a wind project in New York to $4,000 for a solar project in Montana.

Sequester? What sequester?


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Golden taxpayer-funded parachutes for the execs, I presume.

steebo77 on April 5, 2013 at 2:02 PM

I’ll take a side of algae with my bio-fuel.

Mid-rare please.

Polish Rifle on April 5, 2013 at 2:05 PM

Obama’s America

Obama-marchers are having their pockets stuffed.

The rest of you, work harder. He needs more votes for 2014.

Schadenfreude on April 5, 2013 at 2:05 PM

Don’t you feel good that we’re all working our a$$es off so that Obama can keep flushing our tax dollars down this green-energy toilet?

Bitter Clinger on April 5, 2013 at 2:06 PM

Obama is the biggest charlatanic crook America ever had.

Schadenfreude on April 5, 2013 at 2:06 PM

FORWARD!

Pork-Chop on April 5, 2013 at 2:06 PM

Guess these 150 will be added to next weeks unemployment numbers? Oh how I wish we could stop bho/team from giving taxpayers money to krap companies like this that fail! But it seems foto’s keep getting funds?
L

letget on April 5, 2013 at 2:06 PM

There were tons of news articles earlier this week about how Mitt Romney was wrong, wrong, wrong about Tesla, and touting Tesla’s amazing success. I susect this is the ONLY article I’ll read about Fisker.

BuzzCrutcher on April 5, 2013 at 2:08 PM

Well, it certainly is/was a nice looking car. If only there was s Back to the Future III…

ParisParamus on April 5, 2013 at 2:08 PM

they intend to lay off nearly all of their regular employees on Friday, and that they will maintain about 53 senior managers and executives — mostly to pursue buyers for the company’s assets.

They need 53 execs and managers with absolutely no production? Who do they think they are, a public school system?

Happy Nomad on April 5, 2013 at 2:09 PM

The JEF sure can pick em’ can’t he???

He picks companies just about as well as this country picks presidents.

BigWyo on April 5, 2013 at 2:10 PM

Don’t explore bankruptcy. Why waste time on that?

Just take more money from the taxpayers, and sink it down that dry well.

Keep on keepin’ on!

And while you’re breaking the backs of the taxpayers, the Holstein who re-elected you will continue to moo, in absolute approval.

OhEssYouCowboys on April 5, 2013 at 2:12 PM

mostly to pursue buyers for the company’s assets. The WSJ reports:

Yeah right…mostly to loot the place and line their pockets before the bankruptcy takes it all.

BigWyo on April 5, 2013 at 2:12 PM

The Obama Administration fits the classic definition of insanity – keep doing the same things over and over hoping for a different result. It must be nice living in a world full of platitudes where knowing that for everything you do wrong, you won’t be held accountable. It must be nice.

rsherwd65 on April 5, 2013 at 2:12 PM

Its not like the whole of it was fraud from the get go….

http://www.wattsupwiththat.com

sarc x 10th power

APACHEWHOKNOWS on April 5, 2013 at 2:12 PM

Another democrat success story!

tom daschle concerned on April 5, 2013 at 2:13 PM

OT – for good reasons PC will kill us all.

Schadenfreude on April 5, 2013 at 2:15 PM

There was a time when electric cars were more popular than gasoline powered ones. It’s almost as if the Dems are purposefully pushing old and tired ideas… Nah.

happytobehere on April 5, 2013 at 2:19 PM

I rode in a friends Tesla sedan last night. Its a rocket.

AndrewsDad on April 5, 2013 at 2:21 PM

Don’t you all just love this scheme!

Steal money from productive American taxpayers > Spend billions to ‘develop’ a budding technology > Price the product so that the average taxpayer cannot afford to buy it.

My strategy would be: Attract investors > develop the product > offer tax incentives to the company if they can produce an affordable product, on time, under budget … that works.

But hey, genius liberals like Bill Gates want to develop space age condoms!

kregg on April 5, 2013 at 2:22 PM

I rode in a friends Tesla sedan last night. Its a rocket.

AndrewsDad on April 5, 2013 at 2:21 PM

Meaning it goes very fast for a short time?

slickwillie2001 on April 5, 2013 at 2:25 PM

My F250 ran over two Teslas and a Prius this morning. Thank goodness for no fault insurance.

Limerick on April 5, 2013 at 2:25 PM

Pick a couple of failures of green energy out of hundreds of projects funded. Make generalizations to prove biased viewpoint. Classic Erika.

This is like when Romney blasted green energy investments, then media compared success ratio of his investments with green tech and it proved where the actual disastrous business decisions are happening.

Pardon the interruption, you may continue raging.

lester on April 5, 2013 at 2:26 PM

The JEF sure can pick em’ can’t he???

He picks companies just about as well as this country picks presidents.

BigWyo on April 5, 2013 at 2:10 PM

JEF…. Jug Eared F**k?

Yeah, I remember when the big shot Delaware politicians (sens. Coons, Carper and our lame ass governor Markell) were doing a big circle jerk congratulating themselves on the thousands of jobs that were going to come to Delaware to build Fiskers at the mothballed GM plant in Wilmington.

The plant never opened, the jobs never came, billions of taxpayer dollars disappeared…. and these disgusting politicians still have jobs…..

SMH in disgust.

UltimateBob on April 5, 2013 at 2:27 PM

At least you can sue your stockbroker for malfeasance when they talk you into buying an investment knowing its crap, and not telling you.

BobMbx on April 5, 2013 at 2:29 PM

Pick a couple of failures of green energy out of hundreds of projects funded. Make generalizations to prove biased viewpoint. Classic Erika.

lester on April 5, 2013 at 2:26 PM

Provide us the list of successful green projects. As you say, there must be hundreds of good news storys.

Let’s hear’em.

BobMbx on April 5, 2013 at 2:30 PM

Pick a couple of failures of green energy out of hundreds of projects funded. Make generalizations to prove biased viewpoint. Classic Erika.

lester on April 5, 2013 at 2:26 PM

Classic moe-lester stupidity….

Please show us one – that’s all, just ONE – instance where “green energy” subsidies have been successful in creating the good paying, long term jobs that were promised.

I await your response, Moe……

UltimateBob on April 5, 2013 at 2:30 PM

lester

What do you think of the facts on the

http://www.wattsupwiththat.com blog?

Do you have any input on that backed up by facts?

You input is needed.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on April 5, 2013 at 2:33 PM

I rode in a friends Tesla sedan last night. Its a rocket.

AndrewsDad on April 5, 2013 at 2:21 PM

Rocket? Not exactly, 0-60 in 5.4 seconds, quarter mile in 13.7 seconds? I have a 1984 Corvette that will do that.

SWalker on April 5, 2013 at 2:34 PM

This is like when Romney blasted green energy investments, then media compared success ratio of his investments with green tech and it proved where the actual disastrous business decisions are happening.

lester on April 5, 2013 at 2:26 PM

One big different you stupid idiot. Mitt Romeny was using private dollars. The rat-eared devil was feeding his cronies taxpayer dollars. Now that may not be important to a worthless welfare moocher but it does cause concern for those of us who are expected to feed all those parasites. Hard earned dollars stolen by the government so that individuals with no value to society can roll out of bed at the crack of noon in their Section 8 house, text their homies on their Obamaphone, and chillax.

Happy Nomad on April 5, 2013 at 2:35 PM

CRICKETS CHIRPING Lester?

kregg on April 5, 2013 at 2:36 PM

Don’t rockets go from A to B but not back from B to A?

Limerick on April 5, 2013 at 2:36 PM

Provide us the list of successful green projects. As you say, there must be hundreds of good news storys.

Let’s hear’em.

BobMbx on April 5, 2013 at 2:30 PM

And, of course, this administration is so modest and humble they wouldn’t toot their own horn about these successful projects, right?

Happy Nomad on April 5, 2013 at 2:37 PM

UltimateBob,

Well the dumb ass spending on the windmills out in West Texas has made some beer money for the “Windmill Cowboys” who collect the dead birds the wind mills kill.

They go to Lubbock Texas beer joints and spend the money to see Josh Abbots band, and that is a kick ass juke joint bunch and a grand use of green energy money.

Now the fact the wind energy generated is used up by 90% getting to Austin via the transmission lines, well that you can account to the Al Gore science behind it all.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on April 5, 2013 at 2:37 PM

Don’t rockets go from A to B but not back from B to A?

Limerick on April 5, 2013 at 2:36 PM

Well, to be fair to Tesla, that is what happened when Top Gear test drove the 85Kw Performance Tesla Roadster… O_O

SWalker on April 5, 2013 at 2:40 PM

Is that Fisker Automotive … or Fu#@em Automotive?

I’m so confused.

OhEssYouCowboys on April 5, 2013 at 2:41 PM

I’m sure sure it’s the fault of the obstructionist republicans or George Bush or something like that.

newportmike on April 5, 2013 at 2:43 PM

Rocket? Not exactly, 0-60 in 5.4 seconds, quarter mile in 13.7 seconds? I have a 1984 Corvette that will do that.

SWalker on April 5, 2013 at 2:34 PM

And with its 20 gallon tank and 15 mpg it runs just about the same distance between refueling. But then again you can fuel up just a bit faster.

FORWARD!!!

happytobehere on April 5, 2013 at 2:43 PM

So let me get this right….you trade drain time for speed. Then you plug it into the coal/oil grid to fill it back up. Then it goes lickedy split again until it is drained. I’m sure the coal/oil grid is frightened like all heck that they’ll go out of business.

Limerick on April 5, 2013 at 2:44 PM

This is like when Romney blasted green energy investments, then media compared success ratio of his investments with green tech and it proved where the actual disastrous business decisions are happening.

Pardon the interruption, you may continue raging.

lester on April 5, 2013 at 2:26 PM

The comparison is like saying the grammar school nurse if more successful than the oncologist because her patients have a lower death rate.

Romney’s firm specialized in trying to rebuild companies that were already failing. It was very high risk and the success rates were high considering what they took on.

The Obama Campaign is giving our money to supposedly up and coming firms in a growth industry. That’s should be far less risky, but they are still picking plenty of losers. And the State shouldn’t be in the venture capital business anyway.

forest on April 5, 2013 at 2:45 PM

Pick a couple of failures of green energy out of hundreds of projects funded. Make generalizations to prove biased viewpoint. Classic Erika.

This is like when Romney blasted green energy investments, then media compared success ratio of his investments with green tech and it proved where the actual disastrous business decisions are happening.

Pardon the interruption, you may continue raging.

lester on April 5, 2013 at 2:26 PM

Hey there, Lester. If these “investments” are so dynamite, please explain why they require taxpayer funding instead of getting private-backing. I mean if they are reaping such huge benefits, wouldn’t some greedy enterprising capitalists jump at the chance to invest in them?

Bitter Clinger on April 5, 2013 at 2:47 PM

Kirk and Spock will save Tesla. Watch.

Limerick on April 5, 2013 at 2:48 PM

SSDD…LIB…elections have consequences.

RedInMD on April 5, 2013 at 2:49 PM

SWalker on April 5, 2013 at 2:34 PM

And with its 20 gallon tank and 15 mpg it runs just about the same distance between refueling. But then again you can fuel up just a bit faster.

FORWARD!!!

happytobehere on April 5, 2013 at 2:43 PM

Well, that and the fact that it generally speaking manages to go from point A to point B, and then from point B back to point A rather reliably. Which is to say, doesn’t break down for inexplicable reasons that only a Ph.D electrical engineer can figure out. O_O

SWalker on April 5, 2013 at 2:54 PM

The company has been looking for a large investor or acquirer, but talks with at least two interested parties fell apart last month. …

So where are Soros or Buffett? Aren’t they interested in investing THEIR MONEY in such a sure-fire business?

GarandFan on April 5, 2013 at 2:55 PM

But while it was filling up how many barrels of oil did it save?

Limerick on April 5, 2013 at 2:57 PM

SSDD…LIB…elections have consequences.

So should managing a business on the taxpayer’s dollar.

They need 53 execs and managers with absolutely no production?

Freeze the assets and seize the income earned from the Execs and throw them in jail along with the political cronies that approved the funding. Crooks, all of ‘em.

hawkeye54 on April 5, 2013 at 2:59 PM

I rode in a friends Tesla sedan last night. Its a rocket.

AndrewsDad on April 5, 2013 at 2:21 PM

Rocket? Not exactly, 0-60 in 5.4 seconds, quarter mile in 13.7 seconds? I have a 1984 Corvette that will do that.

SWalker on April 5, 2013 at 2:34 PM

The neighbor just got his a couple of weeks ago. I believe the current version goes 0-60 in 4.2 seconds. The day before he got it, he was driving his Aston Martin DB9, which goes 0-60 in 4.6 and he told me the Tesla was faster.

I am not a car guy so just going off of what I am told.

AndrewsDad on April 5, 2013 at 3:03 PM

………….no one…predicted this!

KOOLAID2 on April 5, 2013 at 3:04 PM

No one buys an electric car for a small carbon footprint. Buy a hybrid if you want to save the planet. Electric cars are for showing up the neighbors.

The Tesla sedan kicks ass in this regard and I’m glad to hear that it keeps up with ’84 Corvettes. That would be the C4, no slouch.

danielreyes on April 5, 2013 at 3:09 PM

Marketing makes a difference.

I’ve been to the Fisker dealer and the Tesla dealer. The Tesla dealer is in an upscale shopping center, across from the Apple store.

The Fisker dealer is in an auto center, combined with a VW dealership.

But the truth is Consumer Reports killed the Fisker. Here’s a thought, don’t ship Consumer Reports a $130,000 lemon. Tesla’s brick if you let the battery go flat, but they handled that news well.

danielreyes on April 5, 2013 at 3:15 PM

No one buys an electric car for a small carbon footprint. Buy a hybrid if you want to save the planet. Electric cars are for showing up the neighbors.

The Tesla sedan kicks ass in this regard and I’m glad to hear that it keeps up with ’84 Corvettes. That would be the C4, no slouch.

danielreyes on April 5, 2013 at 3:09 PM

Yep. Proggies buy Priuses and Volts etc to leave in the driveway and demonstrate their moral superiority to all the neighbors.

slickwillie2001 on April 5, 2013 at 3:35 PM

Mr. Tesla was a smart guy, some think he might object his named being used on such a dumb ass carney sales gimic as these over priced toys of the elite rich envioro wack jobs etal.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on April 5, 2013 at 3:38 PM

Does the loan application come with a pre-filled bankruptcy application as Appendix A?

DAT60A3 on April 5, 2013 at 3:38 PM

Look at it this way, if they had stolen a Tesla from a dad in the movie Ferris Buhlers Day Off, they would have been stalled out in the first 10 min of the movie, then they would have had to push it back home. No fun, no movie, no day off.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on April 5, 2013 at 3:41 PM

Obama’s “Green Energy” projects can be divided into two groups.

1. Those that have gone bankrupt.
2. Those that will soon go bankrupt.

LarryinLA on April 5, 2013 at 3:44 PM

Nothing funnier than seeing a Prius with a Dog Eater sticker in the window and 2 sheets of plywood strapped to the top with twine, the entire contraption swerving precariously down the interstate at 38mph and the driver looking as he is going to crap his pants.

Yessir, you showed us, good citizen, me and my wasteful pickup.

Bishop on April 5, 2013 at 3:51 PM

Obama-backed Fisker Automotive laying off most rank-and-file employees, exploring bankruptcy

THAT’S SOME BAD KARMA!

Marcola on April 5, 2013 at 4:01 PM

Once again, the American public lost when the Obama administration attempted to pick “winners and losers” in the free market. Today the electric car company Fisker Automotive, which received nearly $200 million in taxpayer money, is laying off three-fourths of its U.S. workers.

The Anaheim, CA-based start up has failed at pretty much every level – especially when it comes to the company’s ultra expensive luxury electric hybrid, the Karma (what a name!), which is assembled in Finland and received a green-energy loan to transition the assembly to the U.S., something that never happened.

This losing tax-subsidized venture joins other past losers like the Obama-subsidized Volt that gets 40 miles per battery charge, or like the Obama-subsidized Tesla that turns into a “brick” when the battery completely discharges and then costs $40,000 to repair.

This is really just the latest manifestation of the administration’s crony capitalism as their green energy buddies benefit from this atrocious waste of taxpayer money. Americans really need to get outraged by these wasteful ventures. As we’ve seen time and time again, We the People are always stuck subsidizing the left’s “losers.”

So what’s the solution and where do Americans go with our outrage? Stand up against the crony capitalism and elect only those who understand and will let America’s marketplace dictate economic successes, instead of letting politicians (some who have never run any business nor even worked in the private sector) choose free enterprises’ winners and losers. Take a stand, friends. Nothing will change unless you do.

- Sarah Palin

idesign on April 5, 2013 at 4:50 PM

Pardon the interruption, you may continue raging.

lester on April 5, 2013 at 2:26 PM

…meanwhile…keep your head down…and keep gagging!

KOOLAID2 on April 5, 2013 at 4:55 PM

Nothing funnier than seeing a Prius with a Dog Eater sticker in the window and 2 sheets of plywood strapped to the top with twine, the entire contraption swerving precariously down the interstate at 38mph and the driver looking as he is going to crap his pants.

Yessir, you showed us, good citizen, me and my wasteful pickup.

Bishop on April 5, 2013 at 3:51 PM

got one locally that tries to tow a lawn tractor behind it on small (5×5 or so) trailer. also have a very steep hill here, approx 20% steep or so.
have towed him up it with my 97 crown vic before. one time while I had a 10 foot trailer on with approx 1200 lbs cargo in it.
and the pious owner gave me crap about having a climate killer.
so last time I saw him stuck I went by real slow and waved.

dmacleo on April 5, 2013 at 5:11 PM

lester, where did you go? Short on facts little one?

I just love the smell of a good troll spanking in the morning :)

NapaConservative on April 5, 2013 at 5:17 PM

Where oh where is Lester the Molester with the tales of wonder from the Obama slush funding with stolen tax dollars. Where’s Moe-LESTER!

el Vaquero on April 5, 2013 at 5:26 PM

The neighbor just got his a couple of weeks ago. I believe the current version goes 0-60 in 4.2 seconds.
AndrewsDad on April 5, 2013 at 3:03 PM

Tesla put’s out 4 models, only their TOP performance 85Kw model does that. Bare in mind, so far we have been comparing a 2012 Tesla with a 1984 Corvette. A 2013 Corvette, well the Tesla is a slug compared to… And the 2013 Corvette is cheaper. Even Corvettes 2013 Z06 (Corvettes top of the line performance vehicle) is cheaper and it does 0-60 in 3.4 seconds.

SWalker on April 5, 2013 at 6:25 PM

Hey there, Lester. If these “investments” are so dynamite, please explain why they require taxpayer funding instead of getting private-backing. I mean if they are reaping such huge benefits, wouldn’t some greedy enterprising capitalists jump at the chance to invest in them?

Bitter Clinger

Don’t go talking sense … goes right over his head.

BD57 on April 5, 2013 at 6:26 PM

STILL WAITING LESTER THE THREAD MOLESTER!

Perhaps Lester can fill us in on how all of those imaginary green job successes will put 90 million people who just gave up on ever finding a decent job back to work?

kregg on April 5, 2013 at 6:57 PM

Unexpectedly, I suppose.

Actually, I’m surprised at this point, that any American corporations manage to survive. I work for one of them, as a tech, and middle to upper management makes the place complete and utter chaos. The rank and file are blamed for everything, and we get ruled and regulated into insanity in the name of “Safety” and “Productivity”. And, no, we are not union. I can’t even imagine what working within union rules must be like.

WE don’t work hard enough, but let’s not mention the stupid decisions that management makes. My group had a lecture on how to safely use a hammer this morning (what a complete and total waste of my time that could have been used “productively”). I asked what dumbass wrote THIS s**t up. The Safety and Environmental Manager, I was told. Who I don’t think has ever even used one.

One of the new “rules” was, to use your forearm and elbow. Sheesh.

sage0925 on April 5, 2013 at 8:31 PM

Fisker has delivered around 2,000 vehicles globally

The good news is we’ll get to see a Fisker in the remake of “Back to the Future”. The time surfing travelers will go back to 1992, ensure Clinton is not elected, and this alternate world we live in now we’ll never know we lived in.

TulsAmerican on April 5, 2013 at 9:16 PM

The good news is we’ll get to see a Fisker in the remake of “Back to the Future”. The time surfing travelers will go back to 1992, ensure Clinton is not elected, and this alternate world we live in now we’ll never know we lived in.

TulsAmerican on April 5, 2013 at 9:16 PM

Yep, find out what made Ross Peerot insane with hatred of the Bush family, and eliminate that incident or factor. No more President Clinton!

slickwillie2001 on April 5, 2013 at 10:17 PM

With all the government interference, it’s impossible to tell if Tesla is a good enterprise. They took over Toyota’s big car plant in Fremont, CA and I doubt they had the money for that at the time, so who is paying?

We all know Fisker is as disaster and the Volt is on life support, the only question being whether government funds should be diverted to union slobs working on the Volt or to retired union slobs not working on anything.

virgo on April 6, 2013 at 1:40 AM

The good news is we’ll get to see a Fisker in the remake of “Back to the Future”.
TulsAmerican on April 5, 2013 at 9:16 PM

“Great Scott Bill … you are not the first black president! Hillary loses to a man with ‘Hussein’ as his middle name who destroys your grandchildren’s future after republican’s crossed over in the primaries to defeat Hillary!” Nuke Chicago … blame it on Bush!

kregg on April 6, 2013 at 6:47 AM