Tesla board forms independent group to explore going private

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"During the meeting, the Managing Director of the fund expressed regret that I had not moved forward previously on a going private transaction with them, and he strongly expressed his support for funding a going private transaction for Tesla at this time", Musk said in his statement.

Goldman Sachs has always been a key adviser to Tesla, but the apparent involvement of Silver Lake, best known as a private-equity firm specializing in tech investments, is striking. Going private would remove Tesla from Wall Street scrutiny, eliminating the need to publicly disclose its earnings and - for Musk - having to explain himself to shareholders.

Tesla founder Elon Musk has confirmed that he is closely working with Goldman Sachs and private-equity firm Silver Lake to take the electric carmaker private - a deal that would need almost $70 billion in funding.

Musk on Monday gave his most detailed vision of how a take-private deal could work, but shares ended flat, indicating investor scepticism.

"No assurances can be given regarding the likelihood, terms and details of any proposal or potential going private transaction, that any proposal made by Mr. Musk. will be accepted by the special committee", the statement said.

Elon Musk Tech pioneer
Elon Musk Tech pioneer

Goldman declined to comment on Tuesday. Tesla's handling of Musk's proposal and its failure to promptly file a formal disclosure, meanwhile, have raised governance concerns and sparked questions about how companies use social media.

The chief executive of the electric vehicle company said earlier on Monday that the manager of Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund had voiced support for the company going private several times, including as recently as two weeks ago, but also said that talks continue with the fund and other investors. But Musk said he was also talking to other investors because he wanted to "continue to have a broad investor base".

According to two unnamed people familiar with the fallout who talked to The Times about Musk's online musings, the Tesla CEO allegedly told an informal adviser that he posted on Twitter "impulsively", and said he was "not the kind of person who could hold things in", and admitted he "was angry at the company's critics". A week later Musk tweeted, "Am considering taking Tesla private at $420".

Latham and Watkins LLP has been retained by the committee as its legal counsel.

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