Fisker lays off most of its workforce

By Amy Cherry 12:22pm, April 5, 2013 - Updated 5:54pm, April 5, 2013
No one's answering the phones at Fisker's headquarters in Anaheim, California, where the majority of its workforce has been laid off, further dashing hopes they'll ever build cars here in Delaware.

WDEL's Amy Cherry reports.

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"I don't believe, truthfully, that Fisker will be the surviving entity," says Delaware Economic Development Director Alan Levin.

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Levin tells WDEL he was notified Thursday night that 160 of Fisker's employees would get pink slips, but the cabinet secretary hopes...

"A company will buy the car or buy the intellectual property and the rights to build the car and choose to build it in Delaware," says Levin.

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He tells WDEL the state's goal in this battle hasn't changed.

"Our motive is to get the lights back on in that facility and have autoworkers working there again. We as a state, now have to try to secure those jobs, but also preserve our investment, try to safeguard that," says Levin.

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The state gave Fisker $21 million.

"We're going to be fighting to get the building because we want to be able to control the fate of that facility, so we've got miles to go before that happens," says Levin.

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Fisker was reportedly meeting with bankruptcy attorneys last week. Reports say the company has kept 50 executives on staff to primarily secure the sale of its assets.

In a written statement to WDEL, Governor Markell calls Fisker's situation "disheartening."

He says the layoffs don't bode well for a company that at one point had the potential to produce a cutting-edge clean technology vehicle in Delaware.

Markell says his goal is still to put autoworkers back to work at the former GM plant on Boxwood Road, and the state will continue to work with Fisker's investors and remaining management to make what he calls "the best of this situation."

John Sigler, Chairman of the Delaware GOP, says Fisker falling through shows the state needs to review its process of attracting new business. He called Fisker a "high profile, high risk project" from the start.

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