Alas, a promised means of escaping Glenn Beck and the gay frogs (according to Darryn) has met a timely and unsurprising demise. Mars One Ventures, the corporate arm of the project that set out to colonise the red planet, has revealed to have been declared bankrupt by a Swiss court.
The listing was filed back in January but only now uncovered thanks to an eagle-eyed Redditor. A civil court in the City of Basel, where Mars One Ventures is based, declared the company insolvent in a January 15 ruling. Mars One creator Bas Lansdorp later confirmed this to Engadget, explaining that while the for-profit entity had indeed run out of cash, the non-profit Mars One Foundation was still active despite a lack of investment, and would continue to look for funding for the next stage of the mission. Lansdorp also stated that he was working to find a solution to the Ventures bankruptcy.
Mars One made global headlines way back in 2012 when it announced its plans to send the first settlers to our worldly neighbour. The project’s initial timeline stated that robotic missions to send supplies and equipment would commence in 2018, and that the first human team would launch off in the early 2020s. An open selection process would determine who got to go, with the project stating that it had received over 200,000 applications (this claim could not be verified in a 2015 investigation conducted by Matter).
Lansdorp’s funding plans for the project were ambitious. Instead of government assistance or private funding, Mars One would rake in revenue by serving as a reality TV show, documenting the colonizers on a mission that would take the rest of their lives.
Despite their announcement that they had selected their final 100 applicants, and last hearing in July 2018 that it had secured 12 million Euros in funding from a company called Phoenix Enterprises, the project has come apart at the seams. Launch dates were moved up, questions arose concerning the project’s application process. A 2015 report from two MIT graduates outlined how the mission in it’s current technological state would end up killing all the colonists. All of this now culminating in its bankruptcy.
Last Updated: February 12, 2019