Ray Lane leaves Fisker board as bidders circle automaker


Venture capitalist Ray Lane resigned from "green" car startup Fisker Automotive's board of directors late last week, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers confirmed on Tuesday.

The exit comes at a time when at least two investor groups are looking to resurrect Fisker, which has not built a car since July, people familiar with the situation have previously said.

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Kleiner Perkins was an early investor in Fisker and Lane was among the company's most vocal supporters. The backing of Kleiner Perkins and Lane helped Fisker raise hundreds of millions of dollars in financing from private investors.

But quality and financial missteps during the launch of Fisker's flagship car, the $100,000-plus Karma plug-in hybrid sports car, drained the company's coffers. Earlier this year, Fisker hired bankruptcy advisers and fired the bulk of its workforce.

One group of investors, led by Hong Kong billionaire and Fisker investor Richard Li, is trying to salvage Fisker without resorting to a bankruptcy restructuring. Their goal is to buy the U.S. Department of Energy's loan to Fisker, worth about $171 million, for pennies on the dollar.

A separate group including former General Motors Co executive Bob Lutz and Wanxiang Group has offered to buy Fisker in a prearranged bankruptcy.

Lane left the company on Friday, Kleiner Perkins said. Fisker Automotive was not immediately available to comment.

(Reporting by Paul Lienert and Deepa Seetharaman; Editing by Gerald E. McCormick and Maureen Bavdek)