The departure this week of the second of Mr. Musk's two cousins, the Rive boys who had been running SolarCity reminded me I had promised another example of the toll the stress of keeping all the plates spinning may be taking on Elon.
In Monday's "Being Told Tesla Exists Because of Tax Breaks and Subsidies Drives Elon Musk Crazy (TSLA)" I said:
Regarding Mr. Musk, it is starting to appear he's a bit thin-skinned, we'll have another example later today or tomorrow....went into a meeting and forgot until today.
Here's the set-up for this example. Back in the fall of 2015 Chanos was pretty vocal about SolarCity being the quintessential short-it-to-zero-stock. The company was burning enormous amounts of cash, had no path to profitability, and couldn't get anyone but SpaceX to buy their debt.
On October 21 SCTY shared their financials and we posted "Pray For Elon Musk: SolarCity Drops 21% (SCTY)".
The public relations people earned their keep with "SolarCity pivots to slower growth mode" and I recounted how earlier, in August, Lyndon Rive, SolarCity's CEO was told Chanos was shorting his stock and "SolarCity's CEO When Told Jim Chanos Is Shorting His Stock: "First I've ever heard of the guy" (SCTY)".
Oh dear.Well, Mr. Chanos apparently took note of Rive's comment and the next day, while being interviewed on CNBC started out with "One of our big short positions in the renewable space is SolarCity".
Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear.
SolarCity's CEO is an ahistorical idot.
I mean we're all idots from time to time but most of us at least try to conceal our idot-hood from the freakin' media!
The interviewer says "Elon Musk's company" and Chanos replied "Who?"
Here's the video if you care to see it, it's pretty funny: "SolarCity: Jim Chanos On Elon Who? (SCTY)".
Fast-forward to the week before last and, via Sujeet Indap, the FT's Lex US editor:
The Journal does a story on Tesla's need for cash,
One of the fanbois tells Elon not to sweat it,
Mr. Musk uses a variant of the 2015 trash talk:
The upshot? Elon got to use the line, the Rive boys got to say "thanks cuz" for turning their going-to-be-worthless SCTY stock into TSLA, I get to do this post and Chanos got screwed by the self-dealing bail-out but hey, 3 out of 4 ain't bad.When @CGrantWSJ wrote a straightforward critique of Tesla, @elonmusk maturely engaged him on the merits. https://t.co/r73lHJrZkE pic.twitter.com/ay9HhZA6to— Sujeet Indap (@sindap) July 8, 2017
Plus, the TSLA the cousins received may or may not be worth the current price after the model 3 roll-out.
We shall see.