Having experienced “bumps in the road” since the Karma’s launch last fall, some have questioned Fisker Automotive’s survivability, but Fisker says $100 million in revenue and over $1 billion in raised funding would indicate it is making progress.
Fisker does not report monthly sales at this juncture, but today it divulged it has sold 1,000 Karmas to date worldwide at around $100,000 apiece, which is how it arrived at that $100 million revenue milestone.
And despite having had a $336 million balance of its $529 million federal loan frozen due to missed deadlines, Fisker says this year alone it has raised $174 million in private equity as part of over $1 billion thus far, as it eyes small market conquests and more possibilities.
As Fisker’s spokesman Roger Ormisher told us earlier this month, the Karma placed as the second-highest seller in the tiny Netherlands luxury sedan market, and this is an indicator of broader European potential.
The company is repeating the message more clearly now that it expects more European market share expansion for its low-emissions Karma as it also looks to plant a foothold in the Middle East.
“Earlier this month, Fisker signed an exclusive agreement with the Al-Futtaim Group, one of the Middle East’s most experienced automotive distributors, to build Fisker’s sales presence in fast-growing markets for performance and luxury cars,” Fisker said in a statement. “Al-Futtaim and its network of experienced retailers will allow Fisker to reach customers in the U.A.E, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, Bahrain, and Egypt.”
This year in New York, Fisker also took the wraps off of its $50,000-plus Atlantic, which despite its production being threatened by the loss of federal money, Fisker has maintained that it will be built.
“We are encouraged by solid demand for the Karma, our unique extended-range luxury model,” said Fisker CEO Tom LaSorda. “Pending completion of investment sourcing, we are poised to press ahead with further market expansion and development of our higher volume model, the Fisker Atlantic.”
The Atlantic however may not make it to market until 2014 due to setbacks, and speaking of which, as Fisker announces its 1,000th delivery now, we recall last fall Fisker soon ceased saying that it might deliver 3,000 Karmas by New Year’s 2012.
The company has challenges ahead also for its high-end plug-ins, but if anyone was looking for confirmation of critics’ mudslinging that it could be “the next Solyndra,” you will not hear it from Fisker.
The extended-range Karma has won international recognition for its design penned by Henrik Fisker who has also designed Aston Martins, and Karmas are built at the Valmet plant in Finland where they also build cars for the likes of Porsche.
Fisker’s capital-light business model is based on a smashingly beautiful car intended to establish credibility and momentum in preparation for lower priced models to follow.
Unfortunately, the kinetic marketing energy Fisker was hoping for has not been as unequivocal as the kinetic energy its fast and sleek car is capable of.
In a nutshell, it is not easy starting a new American car company in the 21st century. Fisker has taken the heat for every foible perceived small or large, while maintaining its cars are good, its vision is sound, and today it has repeated that its business is growing.