Elon Musk pushed back on criticism from one of Tesla Inc.’s most vocal supporters amid growing concern about the chief executive officer’s ability to manage Twitter Inc. and his other businesses.
The billionaire, who has seen his fortune shrink in line with Tesla’s market capitalization, posted a tweet mocking Ross Gerber, CEO of Gerber Kawasaki Wealth Management, after the longtime investor tweeted about a perceived lack of leadership at the electric vehicle maker and said it’s “time for a shakeup.” That marked a change from the days when Tesla’s stock was soaring higher and fans like Gerber praised Musk’s managerial chops establishing the company as the early global EV marker leader.
Musk replied by asking Gerber for his “great ideas for Tesla and its board, and telling him to go “back and read your old Securities Analysis 101 textbook.”
Gerber had previously tweeted on December 16 he notified Tesla’s board that he wants to run for a seat. Other investors, including Leo KoGuan — one of Tesla’s largest individual shareholders — also have called for governance changes.
The discord comes as Tesla’s stock is down more than 60 percent since the start of the year, dragging its valuation below the half-trillion-dollar mark for the first time since November 2020. Musk has sold nearly $40 billion worth of Tesla stock since late last year, with much of that going to fund his purchase of Twitter — despite repeatedly saying he would stop selling down his stake. The sales, plus the depression in Tesla’s share price, have been enough to knock Musk off the top spot of the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
Tesla shares fell 8.1 percent on Tuesday to more than a two-year low of $137.80.
When asked via email for his thoughts on having gotten Musk’s attention, Gerber replied: “I like it!”
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