By on April 18, 2013

PrivCo, a private corporate intelligence firm, has published a 20+ page dossier on Fisker’s seemingly strong ability to fundraise for itself, while failing to do a good job of actually creating cars. With Fisker teetering on the verge of bankruptcy, the results are staggering; with just under 2000 units sold, Fisker burned through an estimated $1.3 billion in venture capital, taxpayer-funded loans and private investor funds.

According to PrivCo’s estimates, that amounts to $660,000 per Karma sold. PrivCo has charted out an extensive, detailed timeline of Fisker’s operations, and highlighted key information pertaining to corporate developments, government loan proceedings and the various ways that Fisker breached their agreements with the government. What materializes is an amazing picture of how Fisker was able to raise enormous sums of money merely on the promise of providing a “green” car for the very wealthy few, without every creating anything tangible or ready for the marketplace. According to the firm, the government

“…applied negligent underwriting standards in granting the DOE Loan and Credit Agreement to Fisker, which was by any commercial standard clearly a financially unqualified borrower for the loan.”

You can view the full report at PrivCo’s website.

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23 Comments on “VC Firms Expected To Take A Billion Dollar Bath On Fisker...”

  • avatar


    No sympathy at all.

  • avatar
    DC Bruce

    This is what happens when dot-commers are forced to produce a real product rather than vaporware.

    No sympathy either, except for taxpayer money.

  • avatar

    The $1.3B investment isn’t really surprising considering how much it costs to develop and bring to market even a conventional car on a new platform. Had they been successful, the cost per car sold could have been reasonable.

  • avatar

    The folks who invested in Fisker are big boys (translation:wealthy). They knew what they were getting into.

    • 0 avatar

      Warren Buffet can buy a unicorn farm if he wants to, for all I care. It’s the half billion loan that we were all made to co-sign that I resent.

      • 0 avatar

        Actually I think the government only ultimately loaned about 100 some million. The govt cut off the lifeline after Fisker failed to meet certain goals.

        • 0 avatar

          $193 million was drawn down out of the authorized amount, and $20.2M is due to the US government on Monday:


          By the way, about 1600 cars were sold to consumers, and about 388 were destroyed during Sandy. They apparently produced about 2500.

    • 0 avatar

      What they saw was money easily gamed, so like flies to poop, they swarmed it till it dried up, turned white and blew away.

  • avatar

    Only 2000 sold? Someone in my garage at work drives one, and I have seen another here too (maybe a loaner?) And I have seen at least one on the road. But I am stuck in the music business in Santa Monica. I see Teslas all the time in LA though, but not in our garage. There are a couple of Volts and several Leafs here. But there are more Bentleys than all those put together. (up intill a year ago I loved the looks I got driving past them to my spot in my 65 Dart wagon)

    • 0 avatar

      Um, yeah. Here in western PA, I’ve never seen another Leaf, Tesla, or Karma since I got a Leaf 6 months ago. I just saw my first EV (Mitsubishi of all things), and somebody around here has a Bentley. Volts are everywhere.

      • 0 avatar

        And I have seen more of all of these cars than I have the new Dart. Interesting about the Volt there. Maybe no one in LA wants a Chevy. There are more Prii on the road than about any other single model of car though.

  • avatar
    gator marco

    Here in Central Florida, I have never seen a Fisker or a Tesla in the wild. There are the occasional Volts, but those are usually wearing paint jobs for some business that’s trying to earn some green points.

    And we taxpayers only got hosed for $1/2 billion? Why for that money, they should at least drive a Karma in the next 4th of July parade, so we can see one on the street and not in a car show.

  • avatar

    I remember when the Fisker was first shown at the NAIAS. The folks from Kleiner Perkins, the VC company, were almost giddy. Talking to them it was clear that they knew almost nothing about the auto industry, another universe they were sure they could master.

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