Tesla shares down 8 percent after Musk's weird interview

Tesla Gigafactory thefts whistleblower

Entrepreneur Elon Musk has acknowledged exhaustion from overwork, as he deals with a reported probe by regulators into a plan divulged on Twitter to take his auto company Tesla private. He told the newspaper that friends are concerned about his well-being and, the New York Times said, he choked up several times during the interview.

According unnamed sources cited by the newspaper, some Tesla board members have expressed concern about this, because the sleep medication sometimes leads to "late-night Twitter sessions", rather than sleep, the source said. "Why would I?" he said, when journalists asked if he rued tweeting his intentions. "It's a drama we shouldn't be watching".

It emerged that company chiefs have been searching for a Tesla number two to help Musk manage his workload and approached Facebook's chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg about the job.

For now, it looks like Musk is staying in his job, despite speculation earlier this year that he'd be ousted (and, apparently, his own desire to leave): "If you have anyone who can do a better job, please let me know". Is there someone who can do the job better? "They can have the reins right now", stated Musk. But his out-of-the-blue go-private announcement raised a huge ruckus and pushed Tesla's shares up 11 percent in a day, raising the company's value by $6 billion. In a statement to The Associated Press, the directors - excluding Musk himself, who is board chairman - praised Musk's dedication to the company.

Musk told the Times that board members had not complained to him about his tweet. "I wish there was a way to get nutrients without sitting down for a meal".

Musk also came under fire during the rescue of 12 children from a cave in Thailand where officials dismissed his plan to save them with a miniature submarine created by his rocket company SpaceX.

The interview follows a pattern of weird behavior from the billionaire.

Musk, who founded Tesla in 2003 to push cars into a new tech era, said he saw last week's tweet - which included an assurance that funding for going private was secured - as an attempt to be transparent.

In early trade, Tesla shares skidded 7.3 per cent to $311 following the wide-ranging interview in Friday's New York Times.

The company is the subject of a widening probe by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The subpoena signals regulators are investigating if Musk was telling the truth in his tweet about have financing locked up for a deal that analysts have estimated would require $25 billion to $50 billion.

The interview offered rare insights into Mr Musk's personal life and thinking.

In the interview Musk opened up about the personal toll he says he has endured, working marathon hours trying to meet production deadlines.

Auto analysts from Evercore ISI also concluded after an extensive tour of Tesla's Fremont factory - particularly the Model 3 assembly lines - that the company should be able to hit a production rate of 8,000 Model 3 per week with very little capital expenditure.

I thought the worst of it was over. "You can love the company, you can love Musk and hate having him be the CEO at this point".

The Times quoted Musk as saying that his physical health has been "not that great" due to Tesla's turmoil.

The WSJ recalls that Elon Musk has made bold predictions for Model 3 production, but real production numbers fell short of these until this June, when Tesla finally ramped up the weekly production of the Model 3 to 5,000.

But Gordon said a CEO wouldn't live at the factory.

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