New CEO, Board Signal Better Times for Tesla
Three days before the end of 2018, Tesla Corp. added new board members Larry Ellison as CEO and Kathleen Wilson-Thompson as part of an SEC settlement. Many observers, including those interviewed on CNBC, saythe two billionaires, Ellison and Musk, are twin sons of different mothers.
TechCrunch wrote an overview of the impact of the Tesla board changes.
Last year was possibly one of Elon Musk’s best and worst years at Tesla. Settling with the SEC was just one of the hiccups, despite Musk’s ability to forge ahead with the Model 3. Its popularity is paying off.
The Twitterverse has been a thorn in the side of some of Musk’s friends and company. He has Tweeted more than a couple “questionable” statements readable online. Also, his appearance on the Joe Rogan Podcast didn’t endear him to investors either. Elon decided to smoke a joint on camera. Maybe not the best decision.
As reported on 60 Minutes, in an interview with Leslie Stahl, Musk said he actually spent hours upon hours physically working on the production line of the Model 3. He had to erect a temporary tent-like structure to increase space for the production line. It would seem his extra efforts will bring quite a payoff in 2019. Production quotas are all but reached and orders are increasing.
“Demand for Tesla’s Model 3 mid-size electric sedan looks very strong into 2019 and beyond. While there are worries that some European unit shipments might spill over into Q2 and out of Q1, we believe the Street is well aware of this potential timing dynamic as underlying pent-up demand looks robust on this new European frontier for Musk & Co heading into 2019, with China also a major growth catalyst on the heels of recent price cuts,” the analyst wrote.
And if that wasn’t exciting enough for the already successful vehicle, the Model 3 recently received the 2018 Car of the Year award from The Detroit News, with longtime gear-head Henry Payne stating that the electric sedan is “Apple on wheels.”
In an email to employees, reported in futurism.com, CEO Elon Musk pledged that Tesla’s fully autonomous driving system was “about to accelerate significantly.”
The evolution of the vehicle called Tesla, and its creator, continues on a positive trajectory for now. However, a victim of its own success, the company has sold so many cars it no longer qualifies for a U.S. tax credit for plug-in electric vehicles, which was a subsidy to build up their businesses. The subsidy will drop from $7,500 to $3,750 this year, then disappear in 2020. The future may be bright for Tesla, but its stock took a hit on the news that car sticker prices will be lowered $2,000 this year to keep the cars competitively priced with other electric cars.