Elon Musk knows he can no longer ignore the discontent ringing among individual Tesla investors.
The billionaire is seen as a guru by Tesla (TSLA) – Get a free report fans and investors, who more often than not embrace every project, even the craziest ideas, that he comes up with.
But for the past few weeks a cold wind has been blowing in the direction of the CEO of the main electric vehicle manufacturer.
For the first time, Musk is facing harsh criticism from his most diehard fans. These fans no longer hesitate to challenge him.
“I have the utmost respect for @elonmusk as a manager, leader and visionary,” Tesla investor Gary Black wrote on Twitter. “I just wish he would hire someone to fix Twitter and focus on $TSLA as CEO with all its opportunities and challenges and could become a $3T market cap company in 5 years.”
Tesla shares are down 55%
The reason for this unusual displeasure is the continued decline of Tesla shares on Wall Street. Tesla’s stock price has fallen more than 55% this year, translating into a loss in market value of more than $600 billion. Tesla’s market cap is below $500 billion for the first time in nearly two years.
Musk explained that this drop is due to macroeconomic issues.
“Macro conditions are tough,” the billionaire wrote on Twitter on Dec. 8, in an attempt to explain the decline in Tesla’s shares. “Energy in Europe, Real Estate in China and Crazy US Fed Rates.”
Until recently, this explanation would have sufficed for Tesla fans and investors. They are aware that the Federal Reserve’s aggressive interest rate hikes are making it expensive to finance the purchase of cars.
But many now believe that Tesla’s current problem is Musk.
“Elon blaming $TSLA’s recent underperformance on macro factors including ‘crazy US Fed rates’ doesn’t seem right,” Black challenged the billionaire.
For the investor, one of the hottest in the Tesla community, the billionaire made a mistake in acquiring Twitter. That’s because since Musk took over the social network, he’s abandoned Tesla and alienated the automaker’s traditional customer base by regularly attacking Democrats and more particularly progressives.
Musk has in fact declared himself the unofficial leader of the conservatives in recent months. And in the name of free speech, he got rid of the protections that Twitter had installed to limit hate speech, racists and anti-Semites.
“Just one more time I thought @elonmusk was putting $TSLA SH at risk. It was February 2021, when TSLA invested $1.5 billion in #btc,” Black recently said, referring to Tesla’s decision in February 2021 to invest in bitcoin. “We almost exited $TSLA again in April 2022 at $340 when Elon bid $54.20 for $TWTR. I was convinced that Elon buying TWTR was bad for TSLA SH,” he added.
Musk makes a promise. He doesn’t elaborate.
Black said he hoped Musk would “come to his senses that attacking his smart and sinister customer base is hurting the $TSLA brand and will tone down his political views” and that the tech mogul “will soon appoint a CEO of TWTR and resume his duties – as full-time CEO of $TSLA, slack [shareholder] tensions”.
This view appears to be shared by Goldman Sachs analyst Mark Delaney, who cut his Tesla stock price target. The analyst says demand for Tesla cars will worsen as the economy continues to slow.
“The Tesla brand has become more polarizing,” Delaney wrote in a note to clients. “The Tesla brand has significant value related to the company’s leadership position in clean energy and advanced technology.”
The analyst added that the company needs to turn consumers’ attention back to what Tesla does and away from Musk’s tweets.
His price target for the stock is now at $235, down from $305.
Seeing doubt creeping in, Musk on Dec. 14 released a prescription that helped him become one of the most powerful bosses in the world: making promises. He just promised Tesla investors that he will make sure his acquisition of Twitter will benefit them one day.
“I will make Tesla shareholders benefit from Twitter in the long run,” Techno King said.
He did not provide further details, leaving Twitter users guessing.
“How come?” one Twitter user asked.
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