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Fisker files for bankruptcy

American EV manufacturer Fisker files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection

19 Jun 2024

FISKER has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, the second electric vehicle startup (behind Lordstown) to do so in the last year as the industry struggles to lure mainstream buyers toward the technology.


Fisker Group Incorporated said in a filing with the US Bankruptcy Court that its estimated assets are between $US500 million ($A755m) and $US1 billion ($A1.51b). It estimated that its liabilities are between $US100 million ($A151m) and $US500 million ($A755m), with between 200 and 999 creditors.


“Like other companies in the electric vehicle industry, we have faced various market and macroeconomic headwinds that have impacted our ability to operate efficiently,” said Fisker in a statement.


“After evaluating all options for our business, we have determined that proceeding with a sale of our assets under Chapter 11 is the most viable path forward for the company.”


The seven-year-old electric vehicle company was founded by designer Henrik Fisker, who has been its chairman and CEO. He designed the company’s 2022 Ocean all-electric SUV, as well as the luxury plug-in hybrid Karma that was launched in 2011.


It is the second automotive venture (following Fisker Automotive) led by Henrik Fisker to fail.


Fisker Automotive ended in 2013 following a $US529 million ($A800m) loan commitment from the US Department of Energy.


It was later learnt that the US Energy Department did not realise for four months that Fisker Automotive had missed a crucial production target that was required as part of the condition of the loan.


The mistake allowed Fisker to obtain an additional $US32 million ($A48.4m) in government funding before the loan was suspended.


Electric vehicle uptake in North America has slowed as manufacturers attempt to overtake mainstream petrol-powered models. Sales of EVs have faced issues including a lack of infrastructure and lower range, as well as rising inflation that has made car loans more expensive.


Electric vehicle sales grew by only 3.3 per cent (to nearly 270,000 units) in the first three months of 2024, far below the 47 per cent growth that fuelled record sales and a 7.6 per cent market share last year.


The EV share of total US sales fell to 7.15 per cent in the first quarter of 2024*.


Fisker’s bankruptcy filing comes as automotive manufacturers invest billions of dollars in production facilities and battery technology to speed up the switch to EVs. The US EPA has mandated that 56 per cent of all new vehicle sales are electric by 2032.


*Sales data by JD Power. Article contents with AP.


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