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Posts Tagged ‘Musk’

Why Elon Musk has learned to love China

Posted by hkarner - 6. Januar 2020

Date: 05‑01‑2020

Source: The Economist: Schumpeter

Subject: Cloning Tesla: electric‑vehicle wars in China

William bin li is as close as China may have come to cloning Elon Musk. The founder of nio, a swanky electric‑vehicle (ev) company, is in his 40s, a tech nerd, and though not as meme‑able as the founder of Tesla, is treated like a rock star by his adoring customers. nio, worth $4bn, is a fraction of the size of Mr Musk’s Tesla, valued at $75bn, but of all China’s 30‑odd ev startups, it is the best known. It also raises and dashes investors’ hopes with Tesla‑like frequency. On December 30th nio’s shares soared 54% when Mr Li said output had probably reached 8,000 vehicles in the fourth quarter from almost 4,800 in the third. But over the whole of 2019 they lost almost 40% (see chart).

In truth, Mr Musk is in a league of his own. But Mr Li has long had the edge on him in one respect. As our Technology Quarterly in this issue reports, nio is emblematic of China’s ambition to be a hub of global ev production, dominating electric vehicles in the 21st century as squarely as America did the internal‑combustion engine in the 20th. As such, China would be a natural place to produce a “Tesla killer”, as nio was dubbed during a cbs interview with Mr Li aired in 2019.


Yet if nio is trying to topple Tesla, it is going about it in an odd way. It is copying some of the very aspects of Tesla’s business model that have made the American firm’s survival a matter of constant concern, such as lavish spending on sophisticated technology, resulting in correspondingly large holes in its cashflow statements. If anything can kill Tesla, it is more likely to be its perennial difficulty in generating cash than competition from a Chinese upstart with the same problem. Ironically, it could be China that ultimately secures Tesla a bright future. If only nio could be so lucky. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Artificial eyes: How robots will see in the future

Posted by hkarner - 27. November 2019

Date: 26-11-2019
Source: BBC By Janek Schmidt

Early Lidar „spinners“ were bulky devices

It’s never good when a giant of the technology business describes your product as „a fool’s errand“.

But that’s how Tesla’s chief executive Elon Musk branded the laser scanning system Lidar, which is being touted as the best way for autonomous cars to sense their environment.

In April he said Lidar was „expensive“ and „unnecessary“. He believes that cameras combined with artificial intelligence will be enough to allow cars to roam the streets without a human driver.

Lidar emits laser beams and measures how long they take to bounce back from objects, and this provides so-called point-clouds to draw 3D maps of the surroundings.

These can be analysed by computers to recognise objects as small as a football or as big as a football field and can measure distances very accurately.

Despite Mr Musk, some argue these $10,000 (£7,750) pieces of kit are going to be essential. „For a car to reach anything close to full autonomy it will need Lidar,“ says Spardha Taneja of Ptolemus Consulting Group, a mobility consultancy. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The SEC threatens to ban Elon Musk from running any company

Posted by hkarner - 29. September 2018

Date: 28-09-2018
Source: The Economist

Half of Tesla’s value could disappear with him

ELON MUSK has probably played a greater role in the success of his company than any chief executive in recent memory apart from Steve Jobs, who led Apple to greatness. It is hard to imagine the rise of Tesla, a pioneering electric-vehicle (EV) manufacturer, from obscure startup to world leader without the technical genius, showmanship and sheer audacity of Mr Musk.

So it comes as a shock that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the main regulator of America’s stockmarkets, now wants to ban Mr Musk for life from serving as a director or senior officer at any publicly listed company, including Tesla. After the close of trading on September 27th, the SEC filed a civil lawsuit against Tesla’s boss (but not against Tesla) alleging that he misled shareholders about his plan to take the company private. The mercurial Mr Musk had tweeted on August 7th, “Am considering taking Tesla private at $420. Funding secured.”

In one of the most significant civil prosecutions of alleged securities fraud in many years, the SEC is now seeking to prove in court that Mr Musk defrauded investors through his bizarre and ill-considered actions. The nub of its argument, as laid out in its official filing document, is that Mr Musk “knew that he had never discussed a going-private transaction at $420 per share with any potential funding source.” Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Tesla founder Elon Musk says past year excruciating and ‚worst is yet to come‘

Posted by hkarner - 18. August 2018

Date: 17-08-2018
Source: The Guardian

In emotional interview, Tesla founder says he has endured ‘the most difficult and painful’ time of his career

Elon Musk spoke to the New York Times about his difficult year.

Elon Musk has said the past year of his professional life has been “excruciating” and that stress over his business had caused his health to deteriorate.

In an emotional interview with the New York Times the founder of electric car maker Tesla, also revealed that the pressures of work had caused him to spend his birthday stuck in the Tesla factory and almost miss his brother’s wedding.

“This past year has been the most difficult and painful year of my career,” he said in the interview.

Musk, whose company posted a record $709.6m net loss in the first quarter of this year while struggling to manufacture large numbers of its Model 3 mass-market electric car, said he had been working up to 120 hours a week and as a result his health had been “not great” and his friends had been worried about him. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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SEC Probes Tesla CEO Musk’s Tweets

Posted by hkarner - 10. August 2018

Date: 08-08-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal

The regulator is examining whether Musk’s statement was truthful and why the disclosure was made on Twitter

Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk

WASHINGTON—U.S. regulators are asking Tesla Inc. whether Chief Executive Elon Musk was truthful when he tweeted that he had secured funding for what would be the largest-ever corporate buyout, people familiar with the matter said.

Officials at the Securities and Exchange Commission want to know whether Mr. Musk had a factual basis for tweeting Tuesday that the going-private transaction was all but certain, with only a shareholder vote needed to pull it off, the people said.

The SEC’s inquiries, which originated from the agency’s San Francisco office, suggest Tesla could come under an enforcement investigation if regulators suspect that Mr. Musk’s statement was misleading or false.

It couldn’t be learned on Wednesday whether the agency had opened a formal enforcement investigation. An SEC spokesman declined to comment. Tesla didn’t respond to a request for comment. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Mr. Musk, der durchgeknallte Superheld

Posted by hkarner - 21. Juli 2018

Mit seinen Eskapaden auf Twitter fällt Elon Musk negativ auf. Immer wieder streitet er sich mit Kritikern. Die Investoren werden nervös. Gefährdet er den Erfolg von Tesla? Oder gehören solche Kontroversen dazu – bei einem wie Musk

Elon Musk – der Pionier mit Wurzeln in Südafrika musste sich zuletzt entschuldigen, weil er auf Twitter ausfällig wurde.

Bei Twitter kann jeder jedem alles an den Kopf werfen. Dort wird den ganzen Tag gestritten, über Sport oder Wirtschaft oder Politik, über nationale und internationale Themen, über richtig und falsch. Am Ende ist es alles ziemlich egal. Aber manchmal werden auf Twitter Karrieren gestartet und beendet. Donald Trump ist ein starker Nutzer, spricht dort Fans und Gegner direkt an. Twitter hat ihm teilweise zum Wahlsieg verholfen. Heute können 140 Zeichen aus seinen Fingern die Weltpolitik bewegen. Am anderen Ende sitzt die Schauspielerin Roseanne Barr. Die sah ihren zweiten Frühling abrupt beendet, nachdem sie einen rassistischen Tweet abgesetzt hatte und ihr Sender das Gleiche kurz später mit ihrer TV-Show machte. Und dann ist da noch Elon Musk. Der Unternehmer, Milliardär und Tesla-Chef ist bekannt dafür, in seiner 100-Stunden-Woche irgendwo auch Zeit für Twitter zu finden. Meist geht das gut. Manchmal gehörig daneben.

So wie sein Tweet in Richtung eines Tauchers, der bei der Rettungsaktion für die Burschen beteiligt war, die in einer Höhle in Thailand gefangen waren. Der Taucher Vern Unsworth kritisierte Musk, nachdem der ein Mini-U-Boot nach Thailand hatte schicken lassen. Das sei ein „PR-Stunt“, so Unsworth. Musk könne sich „sein U-Boot sonst wohin stecken“. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Age of Tech Superheroes Must End

Posted by hkarner - 9. Juni 2018

Date: 08-06-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal

Silicon Valley has an accountability crisis, and at its root is the idolatry of its founder-CEOs

Elon Musk, shown in 2017, holds 22% of Tesla but effectively has full control of the auto maker. A shareholder bid to oust him from the chairman’s seat failed this past week, but he faces a shareholder lawsuit.

Whether it’s Theranos Chief Executive Elizabeth Holmes or ousted Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, or the heads of currently troubled public companies like Evan Spiegel of Snap and Elon Musk of Tesla, powerful founder-CEOs who were once lauded for flouting convention are facing a new reality: They aren’t superheroes, after all.

Treating them as if they were has been bad for their companies and investors alike.

It’s understandable how we got here—the genius tech founder mythology has its roots in the pantheon of real-world demigods widely credited with revolutionizing industry, from Thomas Edison and Gordon Moore to Steve Jobs and Jeff Bezos. Investors and experts in corporate governance say the problem is that building corporations and stock-market valuations on the notion that every tech CEO is potentially building another Apple is ridiculous and counterproductive.

“If your only argument is Steve Jobs or Jeff Bezos, you don’t have an argument—you have a couple of exceptions,” says Paul Kedrosky, a partner at early-stage investment firm SK Ventures. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Jeff Bezos: ‘We Must Go Back to the Moon, and This Time to Stay’

Posted by hkarner - 27. Mai 2018

Date: 27-05-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal

Amazon CEO and owner of rocket startup Blue Origin pledges to expand his space ventures and spells out long-term concepts for exploration

On his own, Jeff Bezos has sold roughly $1 billion of Amazon stock annually to invest in Blue Origin, which hopes to start offering suborbital space tourism flights by 2019.

LOS ANGELES— Amazon.com Inc. founder and Chief Executive Jeff Bezos vowed to use his rocket startup to develop robotic rovers and perhaps human habitats on the moon’s surface, even if such projects fail to win financial support from the U.S. government.

In a personal, wide-ranging talk at a space conference here Friday, Mr. Bezos laid out his vision for lunar exploration and eventual settlement. Depicting such efforts as a matter of long-term human survival, he said: “This is not something that we may choose to do; this is something we must do.”

Without divulging details about the new generations of powerful rockets, spacecraft and landing vehicles he envisions will be necessary to establish such permanent outposts, Mr. Bezos made an impassioned argument for accelerating private space travel. He said future generations won’t be able to survive on earth without expanding into other parts of the solar system.

“The alternative is stasis,” he said, adding that without space settlements, societies around the globe “will have to stop growing” due to environmental and other constraints. “That’s not the future that I want for my grandchildren, or my grandchildren’s grandchildren.” Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Posted by hkarner - 12. April 2018

FURCHE-Kolumne 238 Wilfried Stadler
Nicht weniger als 12 Ehrendoktorate – darunter auch solche von den Universitäten Graz und Prag – wurden einst Nikola Tesla verliehen. Der geniale Erfinder, 1854 in der Donaumonarchie auf dem Gebiet des heutigen Kroatien geboren und 1943 in New York verstorben, durchlebte im Laufe seiner Karriere alle Höhen und Tiefen eines schöpferischen Lebens, mit fulminanten Erfolgen und ebenso kapitalen Abstürzen. Eine Büste im Bostoner Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) erinnert an diesen Pionier der modernen Elektro- und Energietechnik.

Teslas Geschichte imponierte dem Jungunternehmer Elon Musk so sehr, dass er ihn zum Namensgeber seiner 2004 im Alter von 33 Jahren gegründeten Autoherstellerfirma machte. Kurz zuvor hatte er erfolgreich seinen Anteil an der von ihm mit gegründeten Internet-Bezahlplattform Paypal verkauft.

Elon Musk erweist sich als mindestens so expeditiv wie sein Vorbild. Die wiederverwendbaren Trägerraketen seines Raumfahrtsunternehmens „SpaceX“ transportieren Satelliten um Bruchteile der bisherigen Kosten in den Orbit. Mit „SolarCity“ arbeitete er sich an die Spitze des amerikanischen Solarstrom-Marktes vor. Und als ob es damit noch nicht genug zu tun gäbe, gründete der Workaholic auch noch „Hyperloop“. Zweck dieses Projekts ist die Untertunnelung hoch frequentierter Strecken, auf denen Personen in Hinkunft in ultraschnellen Kapseln via Luftpolster von einem Ort zum anderen transportiert werden sollen. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Tesla’s Make-Or-Break Moment Is Fast Approaching

Posted by hkarner - 16. März 2018

Date: 15-03-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal

The auto maker is racing to meet an ambitious production target for its Model 3 sedan

The Model 3 is Tesla’s mainstream electric-car offering and a key part of Elon Musk’s strategy to broaden the company’s business.

Elon Musk recently told attendees at the South by Southwest festival that two things are keeping him up at night: an apocalyptic future created by artificial intelligence, and production delays of Tesla Inc.’s Model 3 car.

Mr. Musk has good reason to worry about Tesla. The auto maker is entering one of the most critical phases in its history, a make-or-break period in which Tesla must boost production of the Model 3 or possibly face severe financial consequences.

In April, Tesla will reveal whether it is on track to meet an ambitious second-quarter target of producing 5,000 Model 3s a week—a goal that it already twice delayed. The Model 3 is Tesla’s mainstream electric-car offering, priced more affordably than Tesla’s luxury models, and a key part of Mr. Musk’s strategy to broaden the company’s business. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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