The Fisker automotive electric Atlantic sedan logo is seen during its unveiling ahead of the 2012 International Auto Show in New York

Fisker Automotive Fires Most Rank-and-File Employees

Fisker Automotive, the struggling, government-backed hybrid sports car maker, terminated most of its rank-and-file employees on Friday, in a last-ditch effort to conserve cash and stave off a potential bankruptcy filing, sources said.

Venture Investing Falls 11.6% in the Third Quarter

Venture capitalists remained cautious during the summer months of a presidential election year, reining in third quarter investments in the face of a slow economy and soft IPO market. Investments by U.S. firms came to $6.49 billion in the quarter down 11.6% from a year ago.

Slideshow: Top Second Quarter Venture Deals Show Internet, Health Care And Late Stage Focus

Venture capitalists picked up the pace with their second quarter investments, pouring money into Internet and life sciences startups. The quarter’s largest deals reflect this binary focus, according to the MoneyTree Report from PricewaterhouseCoopers, the National Venture Capital Association and Thomson Reuters, publisher of this blog. Six have to do with the Internet or IT. […]

Slideshow: Solar Still Drives Cleantech Investing

Solar continued to be the driving force behind cleantech investing in the first quarter as venture capitalists shifted dollars to more mature, later stage companies.

The quarter saw investors worldwide pour $2.57 billion into 159 companies, a 13% increase in dollars from last year, according to the Cleantech Group. The majority of the money – 93% – went to follow-on rounds.

Surprisingly, this more cautious environment was fertile ground for solar deals. Solar startups attracted $641 million, or 24% of total dollars, as several big deals led the way. The next closest industry sector was transportation, with less than half the committed dollars.

Slideshow: Inside Look at Kleiner’s 30 Deals for Q1

Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers was tied for the most active U.S. VC in the first quarter, according to peHUB’s analysis of data from Thomson Reuters (publisher of this blog). Overall, the storied Sand Hill Road firm backed 30 companies, up from 19 in the same period a year earlier, but down slightly from 35 […]

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Tens of Billions in Loan Guarantees Targeted at Cleantech Companies

The Department of Energy plans another big year of guaranteeing loans for renewable energy projects. In the past 14 months, the DOE’s largest loan guarantee program (called Section 1705) awarded almost $26 billion to 23 renewable energy projects being run by companies such as BrightSource Energy and Abound Solar. The program has the financial assets […]

Fisker Raises More Equity, Plans Car Launch

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Fisker Automotive said on Saturday it has raised $35 million of private equity to close a $189 million funding round that will allow the company to launch its plug-in hybrid electric car. The total includes the $115 million Fisker said it had secured in January, when it cleared a key financing […]

Fisker Automotive Adds $115 Million

Fisker Automotive, an Irvine, Calif.-based electric vehicle maker, has raised $115.3 million in new VC funding. Backers include A123 Systems, Ace Investments and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.

Lithium-ion battery maker A123 yesterday announced that it would invest $23 million, and provide power packs for a rechargeable luxury car being launched later this year (Fisker Karma).

Fisker previously raised more than than $160 in VC funding, from firms like Kleiner Perkins, Eco-Drive (Capital) Partners, Palo Alto Investors and Al Ghaffara Investment Co. It also recently secured a $528 million low-cost loan from the Department of Energy, which was conditioned on the company raising additional private equity.

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