Elon Musk tweets he may take Tesla private

Elon Musk

Elon Musk

Early on Tuesday afternoon, Elon Musk's official Twitter account sent a tweet suggesting that Musk was going to lead a private buy-out of Tesla's stock for $420 per share.

Tesla's shares were up 6.5% at $363.46. Before Musk's tweet, Tesla had a market value of $58 billion, already higher than that of General Motors or Ford, even though those companies are significantly larger and more profitable.

Elon now owns about 20 percent of Tesla and so he would need something like $50 billion in additional capital to fully privatize the company, along with a shareholder vote of "yes" to the move.

"In 2013, the SEC made it clear that people could use social media to disclose significant information about their companies, but they had a caveat, which is people need to know where to look", Pitt said.

Shares soared on the news, were then halted for trading by the Nasdaq at 2:08 pm ET and resumed trading at 3:45 pm ET, in tandem with a company blog on the news.

Or part of a conspiracy to save a failing company as the FUD headlines are exalting, sidestepping the responsibility that comes with owning a public company?

Following the company's surge after last week's earnings, Musk took aim again at a short-seller in a reported short YouTube video that likened these investors to Hitler's last days.

His plan, outlined in the email to employees, would give shareholders a choice to sell their shares or maintain a stake in the private company. On April Fool's Day, amid growing market concerns about Tesla's cash crunch, he had tweeted a fake news release that said Tesla would have to file for bankruptcy.

Musk, however, did not elaborate on when the Tesla mini-car will hit the roads.

Going private, Musk said, would end "negative propaganda from shorts", referring to his hated short-sellers.

Shortly after, Mr Musk responded to replies to his tweet, asking if he would remain in control of the company. But after he called a hero diver who rescued children from a cave in Thailand a paedophile and seemingly meant it, it's best not to assume the CEO is joking.

As a direct result of Musk's $420 tweet, share values started fluctuating.

Tesla has had more than its share of ups and downs over the past few months, due to an intense focus on production rates and sales figures for Tesla's mass-market Model 3 electric vehicle. I think he's serious.

Musk said he wouldn't sell his stake if the company went private.

Musk has lashed out at critics and investors who have shorted the stock, going so far as to call one prominent critic's employer to silence him, and refusing to take a hard question from a financial analyst in the company's June shareholder meeting.

After his initial tweet, he followed up several times when answering questions from users on the platform.

"Details, structure, participants and how the valuation has been determined remain to be seen".

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