Elon Musk keeps grip on Tesla, promises to solve production problems

The most-visible wins for Musk were Tesla shareholders voting for new, three-year terms for three Tesla directors: private-equity investor Antonio Gracias, a private equity investor; 21st Century Fox CEO James Murdoch; and Kimbal Musk, Elon Musk's food-entrepreneur brother.

In recent months, Tesla has been beset by critical production challenges involving its highly anticipated Model 3 sedan, accusations of poor worker safety and discrimination at company facilities, and headline-grabbing wrecks and investigations that have raised questions about the company's semiautonomous technology.

Tesla shareholders also voted against a shareholder proposal for Tesla to appoint an independent board chairman.

Musk choked up after taking the microphone to talk about the company onstage in front of investors.

Arguing that the sprawling company has become hard to oversee, one investor proposed splitting the chairman and chief executive jobs, both of which Musk holds.

"At Tesla we build our cars with love", Mr Musk said, visibly moved. "We really care." Musk later talked about what his experience has been like the last few months.

Tesla has plans to build a rival to the Volkswagen Golf, Ford Focus and Vauxhall Astra within five years.


"Elon time" elicited laughs when a shareholder used the phrase during a Q&A at Tuesday's meeting, but for many analysts the chief executive's penchant for false promises is no laughing matter.

Answering a Twitter question about whether European customers will get a cab-over-engine model, Musk said that an upcoming revision to the design that was revealed in late 2017 will make the truck fit in with legislations across the world.

The company is still valued at almost $50bn - nearly $5bn more than auto maker Ford is worth.

The two positions are often held by the same person in United States companies, unlike in UK firms. He has however gained the backing of two well-known proxy advisory services, Glass Lewis and Institutional Shareholder Services who have advised investors that they feel Musk may be "distracted" by his dual role at the company as well as his business interests in unrelated firms SpaceX and The Boring Company.

I don't think that the results of the votes had any impact since it was quite predictable that most shareholders would vote with the board.

Tesla's stock gained about 1 percent to $294.35 in Tuesday's extended trading.


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