Norway’s wealth fund is staying out of the discussion about whether Tesla should go private, but the country’s sovereign fund did hint at one point of difference with CEO Elon Musk.
Norway won’t talk about Musk’s desire to take Tesla off the stock exchange, Trond Grande, the fund’s deputy chief executive officer, told Bloomberg Tuesday. But he did make one telling comment: “We want to be invested in companies that make money.”
Tesla has never been profitable in the eight years since they went public. The company’s penchant for bleeding billions in cash while at the same time missing crucial deadlines has roiled short sellers and Musk critics alike. The billionaire tech entrepreneur thought he stumbled upon a way to stick it to his opponents.
Musk dropped a proverbial bomb in an Aug.7 tweet suggesting he had secured funding necessary to take the 15-year-old company private. The message also surprised federal regulators. The Securities and Exchange Commission is now investigating whether Musk’s tweet violated federal law. (RELATED: JP Morgan Batters Tesla’s Stocks As Fallout From Musk’s Tweets Continues)
The California-based automaker is conquering Norway’s electric vehicle market. Tesla sales in Norway for its Model S sedan and Model X SUV more than doubled in 2017 and jumped another 70 percent through June. But the company is unable to keep up with long service lines accumulating in the country.
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