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Electric car startup Fisker Automotive did not pay its first $10 million loan payment due to the Department of Energy on Monday, reports the LA Times. At the same time, the DOE has already seized $21 million from Fisker from a reserve account close to two weeks ago anticipating a default on the loan, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The bad news is the latest in a string of problems for Fisker, which has also seen lawsuits pile up in recent weeks, and laid off 75 percent of its staff earlier this month. According to several media reports, Fisker has been prepping bankruptcy documents, but at the same time has also been trying to raise funds to restart production of its first car the Karma.
We detailed Fisker’s long disturbing story in our lengthy piece: A look under the hood: why electric car startup Fisker crashed and burned. On Wednesday the Committee on Oversight & Government Reform has scheduled a hearing where Fisker founders Henrik Fisker and Bernard Koehler are expected to testify and Fisker CEO Tony Posawatz has been invited.
Fisker raised $1.2 billion from over a thousand investors, including venture capitalists Kleiner Perkins and NEA, and drew down on a close to $200 million loan from the DOE. Fisker owes the DOE another $171 million. If Fisker files for bankruptcy, it will be one of the biggest losses in venture capital history.