Monday, 20 August, 2018

Tesla's board might not know where Elon's 'secure' funding is coming from

The Tesla logo is seen outside of their showroom in Washington DC.					Saul Loeb AFP  Getty Images The Tesla logo is seen outside of their showroom in Washington DC. Saul Loeb AFP Getty Images
Russell Knight | 11 August, 2018, 23:06

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has contacted Tesla to ask about Musk's assertion on Twitter that funding for his proposed deal was "secured", the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday.

Mr Musk set off a firestorm with the 53-character post on Tuesday.

Taking Tesla private would remove the pressure from Musk coming from hedge funds betting that the company's stock will drop given its production issues and negative cash flow.

"Musk's statement that he had secured funding was especially material andsignificantly moved the market, ;" shareholder Kalman Isaacs said in the complaint.

Short-sellers make a profit by borrowing overpriced shares, selling them and then buying them back at what they hope will be a lower price.

In their lawsuits, they have said that through his tweets, Musk has helped in inflating the share price artificially.

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Musk has also said he would be looking to keep his ownership of Tesla at around 20 percent in a buyout deal, and that a special goal vehicle, like the one that exists at his aerospace company SpaceX, would allow Tesla shareholders to remain invested if they so choose.

One plaintiff Kalman Isaacs said the tweets were false, misleading and they amounted to a "nuclear attack" created to "completely decimate" short-sellers. The company is based in nearby Palo Alto, California.

Musk also said, with characteristic Kanye West arrogance, that the Tesla stock is "the most shorted stock in the history of the stock market" and that, as it is publicly traded, "there are large numbers of people who have the incentive to attack the company".

But Isaacs said Tesla's and Musk's conduct caused the volatility that cost short-sellers hundreds of millions of dollars from having to cover their short positions, and caused all Tesla securities purchasers to pay inflated prices.

According to the complaint, Isaacs bought 3,000 Tesla shares on August 8 to cover his short position, or bet that the price would decline, in the company.

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