Fisker Inc., which hopes to start delivering electric vehicles in 2022, has started trading Friday morning on the New York Stock Exchange, under the symbol “FSR.”
Through a special-purpose acquisition sponsored through Apollo Global Management, the electric-vehicle hopeful was able to expedite its transformation, which was announced in July.
Fisker promises four electric vehicles by 2025
Of that $2.9 billion deal with Apollo, Fisker today noted that it has $1.0 billion of cash available on its balance sheet, with no debt. “This amount is expected to fully fund Fisker operations and the development of the Fisker Ocean program through the planned start of production in Q4 2022,” the company said.
The company just announced earlier this month a development and production partnership with Magna, which will provide the EV architecture for the Ocean electric crossover, help develop an aluminum-intensive platform, and build the vehicle for Fisker in Europe.
Magna already builds several vehicles for major automakers, including the Jaguar I-Pace. The Ocean will be about the same size but about half the price, at a starting price of $37,499, not including buyers’ eligibility for the $7,500 federal EV tax credit.
Fisker has said that the Model Y–sized Ocean will be “the world’s most sustainable vehicle,” and the company notes that the Ocean will be “digitally focused,” with some features delivered over the air, plus an app-managed ownership experience. It will offer optional third-row seating. Fisker hasn’t yet confirmed details of who will manage delivery and service of vehicles.
The company reports about 9,000 paid reservations up to October 28, as well as an uptick in them over the past few weeks after the production plans.
The original Fisker—that’s Fisker Automotive—didn’t go public and was primarily venture-capital-funded instead. In 2012, at least one investor accused the company of a “pay to play” scheme that effectively diluted shares for the earliest investors. Fisker also took out low-interest U.S. Department of Energy loans, for the Finland-built Karma and the company’s subsequent “Project Nina” vehicle, that were not repaid.
There has been no recent disclosure about Fisker’s EMotion flagship model, the Orbit self-driving shuttle, or its development of solid-state battery technology—although Fisker said earlier this year that the company intends to make four different electric vehicles by 2025.
The greater scrutiny and transparency in reporting required from a public company should give Fisker the funds needed to get to market while also keeping the business focused on getting the first product to market—and streamlined enough to survive.
Fisker has said that it will reveal a “production intent prototype” of the Ocean at the LA Auto Show in May 2021.
This is the second time just this week that a company intending to sell electric vehicles has gone public prior to making a single vehicle. The other is Lordstown Motors, which was first publicly listed Monday.