Published: Wed, February 13, 2019
Science | By

Cancel your plans as company promising trips to Mars goes bankrupt

Cancel your plans as company promising trips to Mars goes bankrupt

The ambitious Mars One project, which wanted to take people to the "red planet", has been declared bankrupt.

It's a flimsy business model at best, but Mars One Ventures says its new investor is willing to carry the company's financial burden while it turns its dreams into reality.

Mars One Ventures has for some time been involved in the controversy over its dubious plan to send individuals to Mars, where they would supposedly live out the remainder of their lives. A user posted a link to financial documents suggesting that Mars One was set to be liquidated.

In 2016, Mars One Ventures was procured by the Swiss organization InFin Innovative Finance, however, its site does not give off an impression of being active any longer.

For now, that's all Mars One is saying on the matter. "During the last few months, discussions have been held with a new investment company", Mars One said today.

In July, the company reported it had an investment from Phoenix Enterprises for up to $14 million that was meant to be used to pay for licensing fees and re-list Mars One Ventures on the stock exchange.

Now, instead of moving toward its goal of launching a Mars mission in 2031, the company "is in administration", according to its website. In addition, it said, the people chosen as finalists to go to Mars were not the most inspiring or capable, but simply the folks who'd given the most money to Mars One. After all, Mars One itself isn't an engineering firm, and has no operations in building space craft.

The most recent Mars One announcement, although a possible fatal setback, nonetheless echoes the optimism that CEO Bas Lansdorp showed when the project started taking astronaut applications back in 2013, when he said the $6 billion price for the Mars effort "is actually a bargain" when compared to large undertakings such as the Summer Olympics.

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