Sunday, 19 August, 2018

Tesla board says Musk started going-private talks last week

Reuters  Rebecca Cook Reuters Rebecca Cook
Laurie Berry | 08 August, 2018, 21:53

In the last week, Tesla's board has met "several times" to discuss Musk's proposal and "is taking the appropriate next steps to evaluate this".

"Having complex stakeholders is great", Farley said in response to a question about being public vs. private from FoxNews.com Automotive Editor Gary Gastelu at Ford's headquarters in Dearborn, Michigan. MarketWatch reported that information like the fact that the CEO is considering taking a public company private is generally supposed to be announced to investors and the public by way of official earnings reports and press releases.

Musk, Tesla's chief executive, shocked investors Tuesday by tweeting that he was considering taking the company private at a stock price of US$420.

"We've been in existence for over 100 years-we've always had complicated stakeholders - and that's what makes our company great and vibrant", he said.

Trading in Tesla was halted for an hour and a half on Tuesday afternoon, by which time the stock had soared to $370.

China unveils additional retaliatory tariffs on $60bn of U.S. goods
Trump has ultimately threatened tariffs on over $500 billion in Chinese goods, covering virtually all USA imports from China. China recently threatened to slap retaliatory tariffs on an additional $60 billion in USA goods.

Musk said in a series of tweets that he had the funding and investor support. Company share prices, particularly in deals as giant as this one, are nearly always decided by corporate executives, board members or consultants who review market data and optimize for maximum value.

Investors must now weigh whether giving even more freedom to Musk, and the extra debt the deal may incur, is worth it.

Tesla stock opened at $369.09 on Wednesday, sliding almost 3 percent from its Tuesday closing price of $379.57. The move would also have little effect on Musk's current stake in the company, which rests at about 20 percent in current publicly traded form. The fund then reportedly proceeded to buy large amounts of Tesla stock on secondary markets, according to the Financial Times, and is now one of Tesla's eight biggest shareholders. In its statement, the board said the company's chief executive had "addressed the funding for this to occur".

"I suspect the corporate lawyers are scrambling right now and hoping the SEC doesn't go after him and the company, because it could be viewed as a statement from Tesla", Peter Henning, a professor at Wayne State University Law School specializing in securities law, explained to the Detroit Free Press regarding Musk's tweet on Tuesday. Korus said he would need more details from Musk to judge whether a buyout offer would be practical and at what price it would be attractive.

"Only reason why this is not certain is that it's contingent on a shareholder vote", Musk said in one tweet. The company already has a $2 billion investment from Saudi Arabia's sovereign fund as well as Tencent, which took a 5 percent stake in 2017. But they did not reveal who or what institution Musk may have been referring to when he posted "funding secured". Many initially thought it was Elon Musk's attempt at a bad joke about marijuana, because "420" has always been associated with pot.

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