Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Tesla Goes Public

It happened! Tesla Motors filed its IPO with the SEC. It is an exciting move for the popular automaker of EVs. Yet, a small twist to the deal - Tesla Motors has decided to stop selling the current generation Roadster in 2011, which is one year before it starts selling the Model S sedan. How does a company not sell any for one year? According to Tesla, the “Roadster needs to be retooled”.

Now, I’m a big fan of Elon Musk, a brilliant South African born man, who our family has met on a special tour of SpaceX. A humble man with a clear vision, balls of steel, and contagious attitude that doesn’t necessarily categorize him as a jack-ass, but more of a modern day Howard Hughes minus the craziness.

So, the plan now is to develop either a four or seven passenger sedan? There is chatter that it will fail given our economy and the lack of private funding, but that is utterly and completely false!

Investors have doubled down already such as Germany's Daimler AG who acquired an equity stake of less than 10% ($50 million last year). Plus, Tesla has raised over $200 million from private investors! Some are saying that if Tesla fails, the U.S. government will look “fairly ridiculous” because Tesla is slated to receive $465 million in loans from the DoE for the production of the Model S.

you kidding me? Fail. It’s not in his vocabulary or his wallet! It won’t fail because Elon Musk is a billionaire. He can inject more money if need be since he is the C-level guy of not 1, but 3 companies. PayPal (or as some know it as was sold to eBay helping to fund and explode his career as Product Architect at Tesla, CTO of SpaceX, and Chairman of SolarCity. The guy is unstoppable, engaged, and cooking up some exciting things with commercial cargo deliveries to the International Space Station. Stay tuned...

Image Source: Fast Company, Feb. 2010


Narm said...

I totally thought this was going to be about the 80's hair metal band Tesla.

GoSustaino said...

Too funny. Lots of Facebook fans mentioned the same thing. I would love to work for any of his three companies, especially SolarCity!

Paul Scott said...

You'd love working for SolarCity. We're growing fast, now in four states, soon to be more...

But back to the subject of the Roadster being discontinued temporarily. I'm hearing that Lotus, where the body is made, wants to stop making the Roadster, and that's why Elon is stopping production. I'd bet that he will bring production of that car into the LA factory of the Model S and build both cars here. It makes sense to consolidate manufacturing locally under one roof.

I'm just glad that several of my friends already have their Roadsters so I can get a thrilling ride now and then.


Stephanie said...

I did get to stroke one in D.C. last year, and I was impressed. I do think that the capital investment is secure and the guidance is strong. Its price point is high, and again, may lean strongly on the male's vision of himself as icon while driving one. Some want us to get away from that kind of ego-bolstering. I think the Tesla is cool; I wish it was more practical to the real world of soccer moms and farmer's markets.