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Fisker laying off employees, entire PR staff

Cutbacks may signal company is preparing to sell or fold, but plans have not been confirmed.

By Clifford Atiyeh Apr 5, 2013 6:49AM
Fisker's entire public-relations staff and several other employees were laid off this morning, according to an email sent to MSN Autos and multiple media organizations by a company employee who wished to remain anonymous.

Fisker's PR staff could not be reached this morning for comment. The number of affected employees is unclear, but for Fisker, a small plug-in hybrid automaker based in California that sells the $103,000 Karma sedan, any number is significant.

According to Reuters, 160 employees were terminated this morning. Only 53 "senior managers and executives" will remain, the report said.

The layoffs are not surprising. Three weeks earlier, the company's founder and Executive Chairman Henrik Fisker quit over "major disagreements" with the board. Fisker Automotive has been trying to sell the company since at least February and has received bids from several Chinese automakers, although no deal has gone through. It is expected the company will be sold, either as a whole or by its individual assets.

In February 2012, Fisker stepped down as CEO to become executive chairman soon after a congressional hearing blasted the company for its lackluster fuel-economy ratings and the Energy Department froze the remainder of a $529 million loan. Tom LaSorda from Chrysler took over, only to step down in August shortly before the company’s second recall, which involved a string of battery failures and engine-compartment fires. Tony Posawatz, who led the Chevrolet Volt development team, is still the current CEO.

So far, Fisker has built and delivered 1,500 Karma sedans in the U.S. and Europe and set up a network of 79 dealerships. Fisker hasn't built any cars since July, when problems at its battery supplier, A123 Systems, forced that company to go bankrupt and delay shipments. Fisker's next car, the smaller Atlantic, is due for production this year, but its manufacturing plant in Delaware is still idle.
331Comments
Apr 5, 2013 8:49AM
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As an engineer with 55 yrs. experience, I do not believe that electric car development is going in the right direction. Like ALL 'alternative energy' proposals, the systems depend on battery development first of all. We do not have developed bateries or fuel cells to make electric cars practical. Only the hybrids seem to work. They would not be on the road if the engine (the battery charger) had to meet the same clean air standards of larger engines.  Solar does not work at night, wind is not reliable, tide and wave are not reliable; all systems will need better batteries. No; I did not include ethanol because that system is the biggest polluter of any energy system. Each gallon of ethanol creates 7 lbs. of CO2 before it gets to a gas tank. Ethanol in gasoline pollutes more by reducing the mileage per gallon. (Yet our ignorant politicians require ethanol in gasoline. Who is paying them?)
Apr 5, 2013 8:37AM
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A123 was the battery company that we taxpayers were forced to give money to because they were part of Oblamers Eutopic Society plans. See  what happens when the government gets involved?!?!?
Apr 5, 2013 8:43AM
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 Another company Obama touted ... another company that has sunk.
Apr 5, 2013 8:48AM
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Nothing Obama has been involved in has helped the economy, but he has given China a boost. How many failed companies is this now? I lost count.
Apr 5, 2013 8:39AM
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Overpriced junk for limousine liberals...good riddance
Apr 5, 2013 8:53AM
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Another obama success story that will go unreported by the liberal press..
Apr 5, 2013 8:47AM
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Another fine job by the President. When will libtards wakeup? Oh i do know that answer. Never.
Apr 5, 2013 8:55AM
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Another Obozo pipe dream up in smoke. And we the taxpayers get stuck with the bill.
Apr 5, 2013 8:45AM
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So the CEO was from the failed heavily subsidized and bailed out Chevy Volt fame and O'Blamo pumping cash $$$ into it's failure sorta like Solendra before the inevitable crash...all the likely suspects involved ...again?  I'm shocked (no pun intended:)Where is O'Blmao's sidekick Immelt from GE...he's gotta be on the sidelines somewhere disguised as the "Job Czar" so nobody will question him going to the Oval Office...to create jobs ha ha ha...
Apr 5, 2013 8:56AM
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As a Mercedes-Benz engineer I once knew said, "There are liars, damned liars and battery engineers".
Apr 5, 2013 8:43AM
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Anything the government gets involved in goes to crap. Anyone read Atlas Shrugged? it's about what's going on right now in our time in history.

Government needs to be downsized immediately, starting with the top liar, murderer and chief, and work it's way down through all the cronies.

I hope Fisker can save their company -- get rid of the government involvement and let's see it zoom! :)
Apr 5, 2013 8:54AM
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Another losing venture sponsored by your liberal govt.  There is a reason private investers want nothing to do with it.  It is not a viable option at this time.  Maybe down the road but not now.  When it is, you will see private money poured in it.  Just another example of the govt thinking it knows more that capital markets.  Of course they arent gambling with their own money they are gambling with ours.
Apr 5, 2013 8:41AM
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I don't think the majority of people are interested in cars that catch on fire, batteries exploding and overpriced yet! Maybe they will become "braver".
Apr 5, 2013 8:53AM
Apr 5, 2013 8:57AM
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Obummers is trying to get us off of fossil fuels way too fast at the expense of jobs and businesses going under!! IT's the liberal way! And they want us to depend on MORE government! I am all for clean air and SOME necessary regulations, but he's gone way too far!! He is killing this once great country!
Apr 5, 2013 8:47AM
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What they had bad gas mileage?  Really, how can a 5300 pound car get bad gas mileage.

So not surprised.

The whole electric car thing is a joke.  By the time it is perfected something better will be in use any ways.  With the increases in fuel mileage for a standard gas car how is an electric car ever going to be better?

Plus with all the talk about how they are going to be doing something else to replace gas tax revenue how is our actual transportation cost going to go down any ways?

 

Apr 5, 2013 8:53AM
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Obama and the liberals want eveyone to drive an electric car.  Now is the time for him to get a great deal (with his own money-not taxpayers') ,and quit riding around in his limo and Airforce-one.  Stop the gov't subsidies to the manufacturers and buyers, and let the market dictate who builds and buys the vehicles. Electric cars are nothing but an over-hyped fad.  
Apr 5, 2013 8:56AM
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And how much "Green Jobs" money did they get from the Federal Government under Obama?

 

Apr 5, 2013 9:27AM
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 Maybe if Obama endorses North Korea, they will go under like everything else he guaranteed would be a success!
Apr 5, 2013 9:17AM
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These "green" companies are just cash grabs for Rich execs to steal from taxpayers... See Soylandra , GMC, ALGORE, ect.

HYPE HYPE HYPE you fake green product, get your money , then dont deliver

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