Tesla take-private skepticism grows after Elon Musk's funding claim

08 August, 2018, 21:24 | Author: Eric Barnett
  • Reuters  Rebecca Cook

But the biggest motivator for Musk in taking the company private is viewed as the freedom to pursue larger long-term goals instead of short-term financial ones, and this includes his view of Tesla as one of the pieces in a larger puzzle that includes homeowner-controlled energy trading, solar energy accumulation and storage, and autonomous electric trucking.

Bernstein analyst Toni Sacconaghi said Musk's statements puts Tesla under pressure to detail how it intends to proceed with the deal to go private.

Mr Musk had "opened a discussion with the board" last week, the six directors said.

The board members said they were "taking the appropriate next steps" to evaluate the proposal. The company already has a $2 billion investment from Saudi Arabia's sovereign fund as well as Tencent, which took a 5 percent stake in 2017.

Elon Musk's tweets early on Tuesday caused plenty of speculation and controversy.

Elon Musk disrupted multiple industries on Tuesday when the Tesla CEO [NYSE: TSLA] took to Twitter to float the idea of taking the Silicon Valley automaker private.


Tesla stock opened at $369.09 on Wednesday, sliding almost 3 percent from its Tuesday closing price of $379.57.

On Tuesday morning, Musk emailed a statement to Tesla employees. In his first tweet he said funding was secured but provided no details.

Tesla's stock has swung wildly in the past several years, hit by the company's production issues as well as Musk's own explosive remarks on Twitter that have turned off investors.

"Just because" Musk wants it at $420 "doesn't mean that there aren't other people who might be willing to come in with another transaction that would be more beneficial to shareholders", Pitt said.

In that time, Tesla short-sellers - Musk's sworn enemies - may have lost more than $800m, according to estimates from financial-technology firm S3 Partners, while his 20% stake reportedly gained $851m.

On Wednesday, Tesla's board said it was evaluating the proposal. The move would also foreclose the option of selling more stock to raise cash every year, a move which Musk has disfavored in recent years. "That sense of the market, investors-so critical for a company like Ford". The statement wasn't signed by Mr. Musk, his brother Kimbal Musk or the seventh independent director Steve Jurvetson, who is now on leave.

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