James Murdoch In Driver’s Seat To Replace Elon Musk As Tesla Chairman

13 October, 2018, 10:28 | Author: Eric Barnett
  • Wanted at Tesla: A manager who can handle Elon Musk

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has denied that James Murdoch, the younger son of media mogul Rupert Murdoch, is going to replace him at electric vehicle maker Tesla.

Murdoch, the CEO of Twenty-First Century Fox Inc. and a Tesla board member, is the lead candidate for the job, the Financial Times said, citing two people briefed on the discussions.

Neither company immediately responded to Deadline's request for comment. He's still CEO, however.

The SEC sued Musk on September 27, alleging that a series of "false and misleading" tweets he made in August about potentially taking Tesla private constituted securities fraud. When the newspaper tweeted it out from its Twitter account, Mr Musk replied underneath: "This is incorrect".

Per the FT report, Murdoch has emerged as the top candidate for the Tesla chairman job, as the SEC is requiring the company appoint an independent chairman by mid-November under the terms of its agreement with Musk.


"An officer's celebrity status or reputation as a technological innovator does not give license to take those responsibilities lightly".

The FT report follows a New York Times report last week that some Tesla directors had proposed Murdoch for the chairman role. He also stepped down as chairman of Sky after its takeover by Comcast. Musk has vowed that the loss-making company will be profitable and cash flow-positive in its third and fourth quarters.

Tesla faces a crucial moment as it struggles to produce its Model 3 sedan in large volume and deliver it quickly to customers amid an ongoing cash crunch that has concerned some analysts. The numbers 420 are significant in marijuana culture - as well as in the tweet that cost Musk his chairman post to begin with.

Initially rejecting an SEC offer to settle the case, Musk relented two days after the fraud complaint and agreed to resolve the matter by paying the penalty, stepping down as chairman and agreeing to oversight about his communications on company news.

Tesla shares fell 1.1 percent to $254.15 in midday trading.

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