Tesla shares dip 3 percent after Musk abandons buyout

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For the company's investors, Tesla's CEO Elon Musk is a visionary whose electric vehicle is giving us a glimpse into the future that successfully integrates clean energy with transport and home power.

Shares fell by as much as 5pc in pre-market trading, and were down around 3pc on Monday morning in the US.

In a blog post Friday, the billionaire entrepreneur declared "most of Tesla's existing shareholders believe we are better of as a public company". The Securities and Exchange Commission initiated an investigation to learn whether Musk had misled investors about the financing.


Such a deal would likely have strings, such as investors wanting a say in the company.

Elon Musk's stunning tweet that he wanted to take Tesla Inc. private and had funding secured was a classic Musk moonshot - given credibility only by the sense that if anyone could possibly pull such a brazen feat, he was the guy. In an August 13 statement, Musk said that he left a July 31 meeting with the managing director of Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund "with no question that a deal ... could be closed". On top of that, there were concerns about potential fallout from shareholder lawsuits and the SEC investigation, the people said. In addition to its interest in Tesla, the Saudi sovereign wealth fund is considering an investment in aspiring USA electric-car maker, Lucid Motors Inc., one of the people said.

The Wall Street Journal reports that sentiment ran deeper, noting that at least one board member cheered when Musk announced that he would withdraw the proposal to go private. After the initial tweet, shares of Tesla soared.


But shareholders said Musk knew Tesla was "woefully unprepared" to meet its production goal of 5,000 Model 3s per week, and that Tesla's share price was inflated until after the company finally cut its production target last November. It quickly became clear that many of Tesla's investors would not have been able to follow, as internal investment regulation would have tied quite a few hands.

"Eventually this will blow over, but it's going to take at least six months", analyst Gene Munster of Loup Ventures said by phone Saturday.

Musk also said the company "absolutely must stay focused on ramping Model 3 and becoming profitable".


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