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Failed and bankrupt, Mars One says it’s not dead yet and might have a new investor

Published Feb 12th, 2019 5:59PM EST

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Hey, remember that terrible Mars mission startup that just officially died because it totally ran out of money and it wasn’t even close to doing anything meaningful? Well, good(?) news! It’s back, and it apparently found someone that’s willing to part with a whole heap of cash to fund its ongoing existence.

In a new press release — the first official word from the company since July 2018, by the way — Mars One Ventures confirms reports that it has hit bankruptcy, while noting that it has a month to figure out how to drag itself out of its grave. As luck would have it, an unnamed investor has materialized to save the day.

A portion of the press release explains what the company has been doing lately, which has very little to do with traveling to Mars:

During the last few months, discussions have been held with a new investment company. The goal of the investor and Mars One is to achieve either a reversal of the administration or a restart based on a financial agreement with the liquidator.

The total debts of Mars One amount to CHF 1.1 million (approximately € 1 million). The investment company has expressed its intention to reach an agreement with all creditors.

The company goes on to explain that it’s going to “redirect its focus” and attempt to actually make good on its claims of a manned Mars mission. The idea all along has been to turn this incredible challenge into a reality TV show which the company would then make money on via licensing.

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.

Utilizing its new investment plan, Mars One Ventures will establish a marketing machine, creating continuous content about these activities, evaluated from all angles, including technological, psychological, economical, and ethical aspects.

The “new investor” will apparently hold a press conference on March 6th, at which point the details of the relaunch will be explained.