Musk says talking to Saudi fund, others on Tesla buyout

Musk says talking to Saudi fund, others on Tesla buyout

Musk says talking to Saudi fund, others on Tesla buyout

While explaining the logic of taking Tesla private, Musk had stated in a blog post: "As the most shorted stock in the history of the stock market, being public means that there are large numbers of people who have the incentive to attack the company". Musk and SoftBank Group's Masayoshi Son held talks past year that touched on taking Tesla private, two people with knowledge of the discussions have said.

Musk says Tesla's board of directors held an initial meeting, which he did not attend, to discuss the proposal, then a full board meeting in which he briefed directors about the funding discussions that had taken place so far and at which it was agreed that Musk would contact some of the company's largest shareholders. "I continue to have discussions with the Saudi fund, and I also am having discussions with a number of other investors, which is something that I always planned to do since I would like for Tesla to continue to have a broad investor base". The fund itself has not publicly commented on the possibility of a deal. "I understood from him that no other decision makers were needed and that they were eager to proceed". Beyond amassing a stake of just below 5 percent in Tesla, the sovereign wealth fund has poured tens of billions of dollars into technology investments, including $45 billion in SoftBank Group Corp's Vision Fund over five years. The lawsuits also claim Musk hasn't lined up the financing necessary to take Tesla private and therefore made false statements.

Mr Musk wrote that since August 7, the fund's managing director has expressed support subject to due diligence.

A few days after Elon Musk shocked Wall Street and investors by tweeting that he would take Tesla private at $420 a share, speculation is still high on who could invest in what could be the biggest-ever buyout deal.

The transaction would be structured with equity so as not to burden Tesla with crushing debt, Musk added.

Musk wrote in an internal letter last week that he would like to restructure Tesla in the image of SpaceX, his commercial space company, by giving Tesla employees company shares and allowing them to buy or sell them.

At least two investors have sued Musk and Tesla alleging share-price manipulation.

The founder of the electric vehicle maker also indicated that he would need to raise about $23bn, not the $70bn that had been reported.

What are the next steps?

"If the board process results in an approved plan, any required regulatory approvals will need to be obtained and the plan will be presented to Tesla shareholders for a vote".

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