How much money Tesla short sellers made after Elon Musk's NYT profile

Gladys Abbott
August 18, 2018

One funding possibility being considered for the potential privatisation is for Musk's rocket company SpaceX to help bankroll the deal and take a stake in Tesla, the New York Times said, citing people familiar with the matter.

Mr Musk also revealed he needed to take prescription medication to sleep during the latest ordeals, and disclosed he had approached Facebook's chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg about becoming his number two at Tesla.

In a recent interview with the New York Times, Tesla CEO Elon Musk discussed the issues surrounding his electric vehicle company in recent months.

On Monday, Musk defended his intention to take Tesla private.

In an interview with The New York Times published yesterday, Elon Musk speaks candidly about the "excruciating" year he's been having.

Musk shocked investors last week with a tweet that he was considering taking Tesla private at a price of $420 a share and that funding was "secured". An announcement like taking a public company private is typically delivered with detailed plans, and if a company says funding is secured, it should be secured.

To add to Musk's troubles, his rash tweets - that even surprised the company's board and made stocks go insane before they were frozen - landed him in hot water with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, which is formally investigating whether Musk manipulated markets illegally.

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While the interview raised more questions about Musk's mental state and fitness to run the company, it also shed light on how he crafted the tweet about taking his firm private. Investors pushed Tesla's shares up 11 percent in a day, boosting its value by $6 billion. As we reported yesterday, Tesla's legal team has determined that the fallout from Musk's tweets could cost the company millions in legal fees and potentially billions in damages from investor lawsuits.

Musk said he occasionally takes Ambien to help him sleep.

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The problem is, unlike Papa John's who will afforded the chance to improve their brand without their hapless founder, Tesla needs Musk at his best to compete at the World stage.

"There were times when I didn't leave the factory for three or four days - days when I didn't go outside", he told the New York Times.

The billionaire entrepreneur dismissed speculation that the Tesla stock price he quoted in the tweet - $420 - was a hint that he was smoking pot. "There's a reason for the word 'stoned.' You just sit there like a stone on weed", he added.

He launched a fresh attack short-sellers betting Tesla shares will fall, saying they were to blame for his stress and he expected even more months of "extreme torture".

Musk has said repeatedly since April that Tesla has no need to raise new capital.

"Mr. Musk said he had no plans to relinquish his dual roles as chairman and chief executive". And some board members have expressed concern not only about Mr. Musk's workload but also about his use of Ambien, two people familiar with the board said.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk presided over the company's SolarCity merger in 2016.

"If you have anyone who can do a better job, please let me know", he told The Times. With Musk's company burning through $1 billion in cash per quarter, he still must show he can make his popular cars at a profit.

A couple of years ago, Tesla approached Facebook executive Sheryl Sandberg about that job, Mr Musk told the newspaper, but he added that no active search is taking place now "to the best of my knowledge".

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