Tesla, Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) – formerly known as Tesla Motors, Inc. – is one of the most innovative technology companies in the world, focusing primarily on producing electric vehicles but also on design and energy. The company was founded in 2003 by Silicon Valley engineers who wanted to prove that electric cars could have power and torque along with zero emissions. In 2008, Tesla launched its first car, the Roadster, which could accelerate from 0 to 60 miles per hour in under 4 seconds. Additionally, it had a range of 245 miles per charge of the car's lithium-ion battery.
Tesla made news on August 7, 2018, when a tweet from Musk suggested that he wanted to take the company private and that he had secured funding to do so. What followed was confusion about Musk's plan and the trading of Tesla shares was halted. Musk revealed later that he was actively evaluating the option but that no final decision had been take. Over the next few days, more contradictory reports emerged about the source of funds for such a buyout. Musk clarified a few days later that he had had a number of talks with the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia to take Tesla private. The fund has previously invested in the company and bought nearly 5% of Tesla shares according to Musk. On September 27, 2018, the SEC filed a lawsuit against Tesla CEO Elon Musk charging him with securities fraud for misleading investors through his tweets about taking the company private. On September 29, 2018, Musk settled with the SEC. As part of the agreement, he stepped down as Chairman of Tesla's board.
He remains the company's CEO.
Tesla released its Q4 2018 earnings on January 2, 2019. The electric automotive company reported a GAAP net income of $139 million, compared to a $675.4 million loss over the same period last year, but down from its Q3 2018 GAAP net profit of $312 million.
Here are three largest individual shareholders of Tesla Inc.
Visionary Elon Musk is the chief executive officer (CEO) of Tesla and Space Exploration (SpaceX) Technologies. Musk was born in South Africa and attended the University of Pennsylvania before beginning his graduate studies at Stanford University. However, Musk dropped out to start a multitude of companies, such as Zip2 and X.com (later known as Paypal), which he sold to Compaq and eBay Inc. (NASDAQ: EBAY), respectively. Next, Musk founded SpaceX and co-founded Tesla and SolarCity, a renewable energy company.
Musk owns roughly 38.6 million shares of Tesla held indirectly through a trust according to a February 14, 2019 SEC filing. This makes Musk the largest shareholder, both among institutions and individuals. On March 21, 2018, shareholders of Tesla approved a performance-based stock option award to purchase 20.3 million shares for Musk. On October of 2018, Musk announced that he had purchased an additional $10 million worth of shares and planned to purchase an additional $20 million of his company's stock during the next open trading window.
Jeffrey B. Straubel
Jeffrey Straubel serves as the chief technology officer (CTO) of Tesla. He holds a bachelor's degree in energy systems engineering and a master's degree in engineering from Stanford University. Straubel is a co-founder of Tesla and has managed the engineering and technical design of the electric vehicles, which was primarily focused on motor, battery, software subsystems, and power electronics. According to the Straubel's most recent SEC filing from November 2018, the Tesla Motors CTO holds 306,398 shares of the company, making him the second-largest individual shareholder.
Deepak Ahuja has been the chief financial officer (CFO) of Tesla, Inc. since 2017. He first served as the CFO of Tesla, Inc. from 2008 until his retirement in 2015, but he returned to the company to replace Jason Wheeler. Previously, Ahuja spent 15 years at Ford Motor Company. He served as Controller for small cars product development program of Ford from 1993 to 2008. According to Ahuja's most recent SEC filing from November 2018, the CFO holds 25,015 shares of Tesla directly and another 38,789 shares indirectly through a family trust.
Ahuja holds an M.B.A. from Carnegie Mellon University, an M.S. degree in Materials Engineering from Northwestern University, and a bachelor's degree in Ceramic Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (Banaras Hindu University, or BHU) Varanasi in India.