Elon Musk wants to take Tesla private

Elon Musk took to Twitter yesterday to declare that he wanted to take Tesla private in a deal valuing the company at $70 billion and potentially ending his fractious relationship with Wall Street. Mr Musk tweeted the idea shortly after a Financial Times report that Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund had taken a $2 billion stake in the electric carmaker. The Tesla boss dropped his bombshell at lunchtime in New York… In an email to employees released by the company, Mr Musk argued that being private would create “the environment for Tesla to operate best”, freed from “wild swings in our stock price that can be a major distraction for everyone working at Tesla”. He also said the company would be freed from “quarterly earnings cycles” that put it under pressure to hit short-term targets, and that being public gave short sellers a chance to attack the company, turning it into “the most shorted stock in the history of the stock market”… Mr Musk’s announcement came less than an hour after the FT disclosed that Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund had amassed a stake of 3 per cent to 5 per cent this year, putting it among Tesla’s eight largest investors.


Arash Massoudi, Richard Waters and James Fontanella-Khan