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Tesla Motors only $9 million in bank?

Discussion in 'News' started by stopcrazypp, Oct 31, 2008.

  1. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    #1 stopcrazypp, Oct 31, 2008
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2008
    Apparently an employee of Tesla recently disclosed Tesla Motors has only $9 million in the bank. Pretty bad news. I hope they can still deliver cars, but sounds like they need a lot more just to run the company. Put in to the perspective of how a modern automaker is run (in the billions), I guess it is to be expected that Tesla would burn through a lot of money.
    Deathwatch: Tesla Motors has $9 million in the bank, may not deliver cars

    Of course this is in no way verified, but I fear people will jump ship with this kind of news. Obviously Tesla Motors has every intention to deliver cars since they, for the most part, are already done with the development, and if they get the loans they need, it shouldn't be a problem. But the situation is apparently a lot more urgent than I expected. They really need to get those cars delivered, fast. And Model S and other non-revenue generating projects definitely can wait if this situation is true.

    Hmm, there must be some kind of non-disclosure agreement to prevent this kind to news to get out, because if it spreads, it is quite endangering to the company.

    D*mn it, I can already see all the deathwatch, anti-EV, anti-Tesla, skeptics, etc. jumping in joy at this news.
     
  2. WarpedOne

    WarpedOne Supreme Premier

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    This is what I will never understand. What good is there in someone's failure?

    What people do not realise is Elon has deep pockets. Tesla is not existentialy dependant on banks and loans. As much as I hate him (yes, hate) he has a very fundamental role in Tesla's longterm success.

    Tesla could publish Delivery counter by dates:
    ...
    24. oktober: 1
    23. oktober: 3
    22. oktober: 2
    21. oktober: 1
    20. oktober: 1

    18. oktober: 2
    17. oktober: 0
    16. oktober: 2
    ...
    A lot of people would say "They've only delivered N cars", but noone could say, they are not delivering.
     
  3. dpeilow

    dpeilow Moderator

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  4. Bradleybang

    Bradleybang Member

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    #4 Bradleybang, Oct 31, 2008
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2008
  5. DDB

    DDB Member

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    More than you know. At one of those Tesla owner town-hall meetings I remember reading that Elon personally guaranteed to back either Tesla or each owner a Roadster. That is a contract--a binding contract in my opinion which which he is liable for in the event of Tesla's default.

    I am curious about the deposits. I'm curious if Tesla has a strict policy not to touch the cash until delivery or production or whether they have been using the cash in operations. That may be a dumb question.
     
  6. graham

    graham Active Member

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    They do not have such a policy. In fact they more or less explicitly say when you put your deposit down that they reserve the right to spend that money on things that are not your car.

    As I was speculating in an earlier thread, every car they make right now costs them money since they have mostly spent the deposit which was ostensibly to pay for making the car. They will not see income until they get through most of the 2009s, if you assume all but $9 million of the deposit money is spent.


    Let's guess their price to build it is probably right around $100,000 (round number, may be wrong). So for each $1 million they have in the bank, they can build 10 cars without receiving any money in return. The money that they are get per car is $100,000 minus the deposit they have already spent. For the current cars, the sig 100s that is $0 income since those were paid for 100%, and that deposit is essentially gone. Soon they will get to folks like me where they are receiving $50,000 for each car, so "only" losing $50k per car. If they can raise enough money in the short term to blow through the 2008s and most of the 2009s they will start to take in more money than it takes to build the car and be cash flow positive. But they need enough cash to pay for building their current outstanding orders get them to that point.

    It probably means also if they get enough cash in pocket soon, they could ramp up production even faster. They probably limit production somewhat today since it costs them money per delivered car.
     
  7. Palpatine

    Palpatine Banned

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    They are still selling cars and collecting deposits, even in this environment. So that is another source of cashflow.

    They are doing the "lock-in" dates for color and interior options for people who are in the #200 to #300 range. I believe that the final payment is due upon lock-in, so that cashflow is coming in.

    They should be beyond the first 100 cars soon and building regular Roadsters.

    With the new $20 million funding round, that should get them to the point where the low interest government loan is in the bank. At that point, Tesla will have enough to ride out this recession.
     
  8. graham

    graham Active Member

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    Actually, they have done the lock-in through me at #471... perhaps all of 2008s, but have changed things so that final payment is not due until delivery (May-ish).

    Agreed. It is going to be tight for them, but I expect them to survive through getting the DOE loans.
     
  9. Cobos

    Cobos S60 owner since 2013

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    Actually the Reuters article says only that Tesla has $9 mil in the bank, nothing about the value of their inventory. For all we know they might have the next 500 cars already bought in parts. So any cash coming in goes to salaries only. This means that I'm pretty sure Tesla 's economics are safe, GM's on the other hand I'm not so sure about....

    Cobos
     
  10. graham

    graham Active Member

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    That is an excellent point!
     
  11. Bradleybang

    Bradleybang Member

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    I imagine that they pay for parts as delivered. So if supplier sent part to Lotus/Tesla shop then it might have been paid.

    Remember the slow build out is still in place as to allow for retooling for discovered errors.

    Thus I highly doubt next 500 cars parts are in inventory.
     
  12. ChargeIt!

    ChargeIt! Member

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    #12 ChargeIt!, Oct 31, 2008
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2008
    Are we getting too tired to react to the ' "founder" offers support ...' in the headline ?!?! Makes me mad !

    But I am happy EM is standing behind the company financially ...

    I bet the inventory is low ... so few cars (a few weeks of production may be) are paid for (in parts) so far. And that probably includes states-side inventory of batteries.
     
  13. dpeilow

    dpeilow Moderator

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    It's an excellent point, but if they did have a large inventory of parts on the books, I'm sure Elon would have also mentioned this.
     
  14. SByer

    SByer '08 #383

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    There may also be revenue recognition issues at play. Accounting for things such as this are complicated enough that, really, we have no idea how "bad" $9M is (and, I'm pretty sure, neither did the employee). Elon's remarks - along with the re-iteration of personal support - were calm enough about the additional round of financing. It doesn't even sound like he has to dip into his own pocket more.

    Hey, if more skittish folks cancel, well, it's their loss. I'm just 10 behind Graham at 481, I wouldn't mind being moved up more!
     
  15. Bradleybang

    Bradleybang Member

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    This just came as email to the depositors

    I want to address some of the speculation in the media about the financial stability of Tesla. Yesterday, an employee inappropriately leaked company information to a blog that was reported out of context and with erroneous conclusions.

    Tesla is in the midst of closing an internal round of funding that will be sufficient for the company to become cash flow positive. As this financing round is from existing investors, we will not face the challenges of trying to raise external money in today’s capital markets. Our current cash position is more than strong enough to continue operations and support our production plans until the round is closed, which I expect to happen very shortly.

    With the restructuring that was announced two weeks ago, we have increased, not diminished, our focus on delivering the Tesla Roadster. We have delivered over 50 cars and are producing cars at a steady rate of 10 per week. As soon as we have stabilized production at that rate, we will increase production gradually to a rate of 30 and possibly 40 per week by next spring.

    As I have said to many of you before and have stated publicly, I personally stand behind delivering your cars and personally stand behind the deposits that you have entrusted to Tesla.

    Thank you for your continued loyalty and please email me directly with any questions or concerns. I am planning a more extensive customer update after the financing round is closed.

    Elon Musk
    Chairman and CEO
    Tesla Motors
     
  16. graham

    graham Active Member

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    Tesla Motors getting new money

    Are they talking about us? Or is there a different web site?
     
  17. Alpine Driver

    Alpine Driver Member

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    european version of the mail from elon musk

    I want to address some of the speculation in the media about the financial stability of Tesla. Yesterday, an employee inappropriately leaked company information to a blog that was reported out of context and with erroneous conclusions.

    Tesla is in the midst of closing an internal round of funding that will be sufficient for the company to become cash flow positive. As this financing round is from existing investors, we will not face the challenges of trying to raise external money in today’s capital markets. Our current cash position is more than strong enough to continue operations and support our production plans until the round is closed, which I expect to happen very shortly.

    With the restructuring that was announced two weeks ago, we have increased, not diminished, our focus on delivering the Tesla Roadster. We are still on track to start shipping Tesla Roadsters to our European customers next May.

    As I have said to many of you before and have stated publicly, I personally stand behind delivering your cars and personally stand behind the deposits that you have entrusted to Tesla.

    Thank you for your continued loyalty and please email me directly with any questions or concerns. I am planning a more extensive customer update after the financing round is closed.



    Elon Musk
    Chairman and CEO
    Tesla Motors
     
  18. dpeilow

    dpeilow Moderator

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    I actually emailed Darryl yesterday to ask if the European plans were affected by recent events. He replied that Europe is still a priority and that there is a focus on establishing service facilities (to support the upcoming deliveries). So I would say that this supports the position that Elon has outlined in that customer email.
     
  19. DaveD

    DaveD EVs Kick Gas!

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    I think that they're referring to ValleyWag.com.
     

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