* Fisker falls short of $150 mln goal
* Funds slated for 2nd-gen powertrain, Karma campaign
* $1.2 bln raised from private investors since 2007
By Deepa Seetharaman
DETROIT, Sept 26 Fisker Automotive, the maker of
the Karma plug-in hybrid car, has raised just over $100 million
in new financing and will outline production plans for its
second model by the end of the year, the company said.
That brings to more than $1.2 billion the amount of money
Fisker has raised from private investors since its founding in
2007. In a statement on Wednesday, Chief Executive Tony Posawatz
said the new financing was "another major vote of confidence" in
But the amount falls short of Fisker's $150 million target
to plug holes in its budget after several setbacks this year
tied to its Karma launch. A $529 million U.S. government loan
that had been the cornerstone of Fisker's business plan was
frozen earlier this year after the company drew down only $193
Fisker will use the $100 million to develop its
second-generation powertrain and expand into China and the
Middle East. It will also help pay for a new global marketing
campaign for the Karma that relies heavily on social media,
Fisker spokesman Roger Ormisher said.
The Karma flagship sedan, which costs more than $100,000, was
launched in December and 1,500 have been sold to consumers in
the United States and Europe. Fisker aims to start selling the
Karma in China in December.
Analysts and consumers alike have lauded the Karma for its
styling, but the car has also faced several embarrassing quality
problems this year, including safety recalls and a scathing
Consumer Reports review this week.
The Department of Energy cited Fisker's one-year delay in
bringing the Karma to showrooms for its decision to freeze the
loan. Fisker had planned to use the rest of the loan to build
its second model, the Atlantic hybrid, at a former General
Motors Co factory in Wilmington, Delaware.
Last month, Ray Lane, a Fisker director and a managing
partner at venture firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, told
Reuters that Fisker wanted to raise about $150 million to tide
the company over until it launches Atlantic production.
Plans to build the Atlantic were put on hold after the DOE's
decision and Fisker now aims to announce production plans and a
timeline for the Atlantic by December, said Posawatz, who was
named Fisker's third CEO in August.
"We're getting closer and closer to the ability to self-fund
the development of the Atlantic," Ormisher said. "We should have
enough equity on board to announce what we're going to do, how,
when, and where."