Saudi Investment Fund Eyes Tesla Rival

21 August, 2018, 12:28 | Author: Rachel Mcdaniel
  • Elon Musk

The bearish analysis followed a report on Sunday that Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund - the very investor that Musk has described as a linchpin of his plan to take Tesla private - was considering buying a stake in another United States electric-car company.

The stock fell by as much as 6.7 per cent to a three-month low of $285 in morning trading in NY, some way off the $420-a-share take-private offer for which Mr Musk, the company's co-founder and chief executive, claimed to have secured funding this month. "It is not." Musk tweeted at 2:32 a.m. on Sunday.

That said, the mythical $35,000 Model 3 likely won't be available until September at the absolute earliest given that Tesla didn't hit a production rate of 5,000 units per week until the end of June.

A deal with Lucid Motors would also be more in line with PIF's limited resources, given that, despite its $250 billion in assets, PIF has already made substantial commitments to other technology companies or investments, including a $45-billion agreement to invest in a giant technology fund led by Japan's SoftBank Group Corp.

While Tesla and Lucid aren't at all on the same level - Lucid has only shown electric-car prototypes, whereas Tesla produces thousands of cars a month - the prospect of controlling Lucid may have appeal to the Saudis. Musk also told The Times that a search for a second-in-command who could take over most of his daily duties was not active at the moment, even as he admitted to personal struggles and stress over the past year.

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Musk said he had no choice but to work long hours because the alternative was potentially catastrophic for Tesla.

Just after 2:30 a.m. Sunday morning, Musk responded, saying that "Ford & Tesla are the only 2 American auto companies to avoid bankruptcy".

He later said that meetings with Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund had given him confidence to announce the news.

Huffington's attempted intervention comes at a time when she's been campaigning in support of the benefits of sleep.

Tesla has presented plenty of challenges for Musk. Reuters claims Lucid expects to begin production before the end of this year, but if anyone has photos of an actual Lucid factory anywhere in the U.S., could you please send them along? Lucid's website is taking refundable $2,500 deposits for the vehicles it plans to eventually sell. The company has since assembled a team recruited from Mazda and Tesla, including Chief Technical Officer Peter Rawlinson, who was chief engineer of Tesla's Model S before joining in 2013. PIF and Lucid have not discussed any talks publicly. Ford ultimately moved on.

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