Fisker, the automotive company that has been selling its hybrid-powered Karma vehicle for over a year now, is reported to be laying off 160 employees, which is approximately 75% of the entire company's staff. Rumors were flying around earlier this morning, but it appears to be a done deal, and this could spell the end for the luxury hybrid auto manufacturer.
According to Reuters, Fisker says that the layoffs were a "necessary strategic step" in the company's efforts to "maximize the value of Fisker's core assets." This is apparently a last-ditch effort for Fisker, hoping to conserve cash and prevent filing for bankruptcy, but the lookout on the company looks bleak at best. The company declined to speak on the possibility of bankruptcy.
Approximately 160 rank-and-file employees were let go without receiving severance packages, but 53 senior managers and executives were asked to stay on board in order to help pursue buyers for the company's assets, according to an anonymous source. However, since Fisker is government-based, the remaining executives are making negotiations with the US Department of Energy to work out a new repayment plan that Fisker owes them.
Fisker has faced some trials and tribulations as of recently. The company was hit hard by Hurricane Sandy, destroying 300 Fisker Karma vehicles. On top of that, owners have been reporting a handful of issues with the car, including certain ones catching on fire and seeing random break-downs. And according to one ex-employee, Fisker knowingly sold half-baked cars to customers. Ouch!