Tesla Stock Drops As Elon Musk Unloads On 'Excruciating' Year

19 August, 2018, 11:18 | Author: Regina Silva

An analysis this week by Bernstein's Toni Sacconaghi concludes that Tesla is fairly valued at around its current stock price.

In the interview with The New York Times, Musk blamed short-sellers, from whom he said he anticipated "a few months of extreme torture".

According to The Verge, Musk said in the YouTube interview that he hoped to scale production at Tesla and lower their design and technology costs enough to be able to offer a truly mass-market electric vehicle.

Musk discussed his plans and goals about taking Tesla private. "This has really come at the expense of seeing my kids".

But the paper reports that some on the board are uncomfortable with Musk's use of drugs, particularly sleep aid Ambien, which could lead to late-night erratic tweeting. "Weed is not helpful for productivity", he told the Times. You just sit there like a stone on weed'. He may have been referring to short-sellers, investors betting against Tesla whom he has openly wrangled with in the past. During Tesla's first-quarter earnings call in May, Musk dissed analysts, cutting off Sanford Bernstein's Toni Sacconaghi because of what he called a "boring, bonehead" question.

Two people described by the Times as familiar with the matter said Tesla's board members were angry at Musk for failing to consult with them before sending the tweet.

Experts say regulators likely are investigating if Musk was truthful in the tweet about having the financing set for the deal.

"If the board does not get him out of this slot, at a minimum on a leave-of-absence basis, I think the board is going to be seen by a lot of people who love the company as being derelict in their duties", Professor Gordon said.

As analysts cast doubt over the profitability the Model 3 electric auto, shares plunged 9pc.

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Additionally Musk denied he was "on weed" or "stoned" when he sent the tweet claiming to be taking Tesla private for a $420 share, although he acknowledged the value could be taken as a reference to marijuana.

But Musk, who is also the boss of rocket company SpaceX and other ventures, said he has no plans to leave the CEO and chairman roles at Tesla. "But from a personal pain standpoint, the worst is yet to come".

Aug 8: Six of nine directors state Mr Musk had "opened a discussion with the board about taking the company private" the previous week and it is evaluating it.

Tesla executives have tried for some time to recruit a Chief Operating Officer, a second in command that could hopefully keep Musk under control, but so far have failed to find anyone.

Erik Gordon, a University of MI business and law professor, told The Associated Press that Tesla's board now has a fiduciary duty to shareholders to take action. They can have the job.

Tesla produced only slightly more than 100,000 vehicles a year ago and the company has been struggling to boost production of its Model 3, which is less expensive than its first models and could help expand Tesla's base.

'Is there someone who can do the job better? "They can have the reins right now", Musk tells the Times.

A couple of years ago, Tesla approached Facebook executive Sheryl Sandberg about that job, Mr Musk told the newspaper, but he added that no active search is taking place now "to the best of my knowledge".

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