/ Elon Musk

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aln - on 03 Dec 2017
Is he really an entrepreneur who cares? Is he gonna save the world?
3
captain paranoia - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to aln:

> Is he really an entrepreneur who cares?

Possibly.

> Is he gonna save the world?

With his space launch vehicles and autonomous electric cars?

No.
4
summo on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to aln:

No, he won't. His goal is to prove something is possible and it's up to the population to save itself. He's said publicly he isn't trying to take over the electric car market, he'll prove the technology and do it really well, hoping others also follow his lead. Granted he is doing more individually than most countries.
ian caton on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to aln:

Thought his objective was Mars.
BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to aln:

Some would argue he's a mountebank who continues to swindle huge amounts of tax payer and pension money without any real conviction that his factories will ever churn out cars in meaningful numbers. He's a good showman of course.
21
Yanis Nayu - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to aln:

I like his thoughts on regulating AI before it’s too late.
2
wintertree - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> Some would argue he's a mountebank who continues to swindle huge amounts of tax payer and pension money without any real conviction that his factories will ever churn out cars in meaningful numbers.

What’s he swindling exactly? Government loan to Tesla that was paid back in full unlike some of the existing bigger car firms’ loans? NASA contracts that are being fulfilled and represent good value for money vs other US firms?

> He's a good showman of course.

He really isn’t. He’s nervous and practically stuttering when on stage. It’s worth remembering his openly stated purpose for Tesla from day 1, which is not to make money but to force other existing firms to innovate.
aln - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to ian caton:

That's one of them.
BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:
> What’s he swindling exactly?

The argument goes that Tesla is a bubble. Its capitalisation is greater than Ford or GM despite barely yet building any cars. If Musk once said Tesla won't make any money then he doesn't appear to have been claiming that lately. Meanwhile what appears to be a substantial redundancy programme has been dismissed as a bizarre mass disciplinary process and, showman that he is (it's not all about avoiding the stuttering), Musk then deflected press attention by launching a fantasy car, one that he'll possibly never build, in order to protect the share price.

Investors might have been overly enthusiastic and that isn't Musk's fault. But the firm's commitment to raising money by public share offerings isn't matched by delivery against its production ambitions. And until it starts to generate real income, Tesla looks more like an exercise in financial engineering than automotive.
Post edited at 11:32
2
wintertree - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> The argument goes that Tesla is a bubble

I would say it’s a gamble not a bubble - the real money is in the mass scale battery production and if they crack that their car business is irrelevant to their success. If they fail it will be called - unfairly I think - a bubble. Unlike bubbles there is real stuff behind this. Uncertain stuff for sure.

Either way, Tesla’s arguable/apparent overvaluation is *not* swindling tax payer money, it’s swindling investor money. Assuming tax payer meant tax dollars, perhaps I misinterpret.
Post edited at 11:46
3
BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:
Really?

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-1216-tesla-credits-20151216-story.html

https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/amp.businessinsider.com/tesla-stock-price-california-state-government...

I get that you and others are enthusiastic about Tesla's objectives. Electrification in the automobile industry is an interesting development. But I'm looking at Tesla as an entrepreneur, investor and former director of a publicly quoted company. It looks to me like a classic case of throwing good money after bad. The sustained support from taxpayer and investors might help Tesla to become profitable, but the taxpayer is becoming complicit in the creation of a monopoly and investors may never see a return on their stake once the harsh realities of the car industry come home to roost.
Post edited at 12:22
1
wintertree - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

Shock horror state offers tax credit in return for job creation.

If that’s the best you’ve got - and it’s unrelated to your bubble comment - then I’ll not worry myself. Remind me - how many tax breaks does Nissan get for its Sunderland plant? They’re about the only EV manufacturer to out-produce Tesla.
BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:

So first you say Musk isn't in receipt of taxpayer monies. Now you agree he is. You're not worried about it, and that's your perogative, but many are deeply concerned that considerable public funds are propping up a perpetually loss-making enterprise, thereby enriching a mega-entrepreneur and his cronies at the expense of much needed public spending.
5
wintertree - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> So first you say Musk isn't in receipt of taxpayer monies.

Yes

> Now you agree he is.

I do not. Aren’t you a business owner? I’d then expect you to understand that partial tax relief on a new business creating jobs in an area is not taking money from taxpayers. It’s giving new money - just not as much the default pre-negotiation starting point. Just like all big businesses.


> You're not worried about it, and that's your perogative, but many are deeply concerned that considerable public funds are propping up a perpetually loss-making enterprise,

What public funds? Do show me the path of public money going into Tesla and not coming out.

It’s not perpetually loss making, its perpetually expanding - all revenue being ploughed in to the next growth. That’s another reason why it’s valuation doesn’t reflect profit. Long term thinking.

> thereby enriching a mega-entrepreneur and his cronies at the expense of much needed public spending.

If this was the USA I’d accuse you of being a paid shill for General Motors and united launch alliance. Honestly I would.

What the public much needs is cleaner air, and he’s burning his life out - his whole energy and time - on delivering that and other visions of the future. Show me the self serving rich cronies...

You seem to have swallowed hook line and sinker the FUD being spread in the states by the incumbent players who are everything our claim to despise about Tesla/Musk.

Edit: I see you’ve edited your 11:58 post to expand it significantly since I replied. I understand much better your view from that new text, albeit disagree.
Post edited at 12:53
tom_in_edinburgh - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> Investors might have been overly enthusiastic and that isn't Musk's fault. But the firm's commitment to raising money by public share offerings isn't matched by delivery against its production ambitions. And until it starts to generate real income, Tesla looks more like an exercise in financial engineering than automotive.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mCj_C1NOVxw

That is a production car you can actually buy driving itself on real roads. That is not financial engineering. The money is irrelevant compared with that level of game-changing progress. In Britain we have far too many accountants running companies and far too many fund managers with no technology skills or enthusiasm making investment decisions. It is short term b*llshit to look at the current financial numbers rather than the technology and opportunity when considering a company like Tesla or Facebook which is why the UK ends up with ARM instead of Apple. It isn't capable of making the big play.



1
BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:

You're correct that the development of new battery technology might be highly significant and very profitable. But if that were Musk's primary objective then he would have limited the scope of the business model to this goal, giving investors more clarity as to the risks and payback, and leaning on taxpayers for the potential pollution benefits instead of luring them into anti-competitive practices.

Interesting discussion.
wintertree - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> But if that were Musk's primary objective then he would have limited the scope of the business model to this goal, giving investors more clarity as to the risks and payback, and leaning on taxpayers for the potential pollution benefits instead of luring them into anti-competitive practices.

Conversely he thinks big - easier to finance the batteries with an extant customer so create that first. Look at SpaceX - they could be eclipsed in turnover by the satellite internet business he hopes to build off the back of SpaceX. More than once he has to create an entire supply chain (big bits anyhow) to do achieve his goals.

I don’t like the tax credits business - but he has to compete with a giant industry firmly embedded into the taxpayers’s business far worse than Tesla is - so it’s always odd to see Tesla signed out for criticism. I can also accept it in terms of the fundamental importance of pushing cleaner energy and transport.

He’s bending everything he can - investors, governments, the public - to his will. Creating the future - not trying to make a profit. He’s said as much since day 1 of Tesla. Given the abject failure of governments here, I couldn’t be happier to see private industry doing this. Musk isn’t the only such visionary but he’s the most visible.
Post edited at 13:09
2
BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh:


> That is a production car you can actually buy driving itself on real roads. That is not financial engineering. The money is irrelevant compared with that level of game-changing progress. In Britain we have far too many accountants running companies and far too many fund managers with no technology skills or enthusiasm making investment decisions. It is short term b*llshit to look at the current financial numbers rather than the technology and opportunity when considering a company like Tesla or Facebook which is why the UK ends up with ARM instead of Apple. It isn't capable of making the big play.

I know. Two of my co-directors drive the Tesla Model S.

And I'm an admirer of entrepreneurs who think big. All the more so for being in the same game but not personally being equipped with that vision.

However, no matter how real the cars are, they aren't being delivered to the customers. Musk promised to build 5,000 cars in a week yet actually managed 180 in the last month!! That smacks of incompetence at best, and, at worst, conscious deception of customers and investors.

https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/www.forbes.com/sites/jimcollins/2017/11/30/teslas-production-problems...

http://uk.businessinsider.com/tesla-model-3-production-battery-problems-troubling-2017-11
3
Stichtplate on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh:


> In Britain we have far too many accountants running companies and far too many fund managers with no technology skills or enthusiasm making investment decisions.

Absolutely 100% spot on.

Far too many with a purely financial background trying to run companies from spreadsheets with no awareness of that old adage “the map is not the terrain”.
BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to Stichtplate:
> Absolutely 100% spot on.

> Far too many with a purely financial background trying to run companies from spreadsheets with no awareness of that old adage “the map is not the terrain”.

I'm afraid that's a consequence of capital markets and public share ownership. Running a plc mostly means spending your day managing financial analysts and, through them or directly, the expectations of shareholders. It's complex and technical and there's no doubt an accountant is best placed to understand those demands. The CEO will always have final say on strategy but the actual running of the company is done by the divisional directors with more direct experience of their areas of responsibility.

The biggest danger is that the demands of shareholders and the best interests of the company and its staff are not always well aligned and the best CEOs will reconcile those conflicts.

Edit to add: I'm not an accountant btw
Post edited at 13:34
BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:

Can you show me where Musk has recently stated that Tesla doesn't have profit as an objective?

When I perform a search all I find are statements exhorting staff to help him make a profit and Musk's projections that Tesla will be profitable some time in the near future.

If profit wasn't his original objective, which might be true, the minute he raised capital from investors it became the goal.
wintertree - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> Can you show me where Musk has recently stated that Tesla doesn't have profit as an objective?

He’s stuck by his original master plan, and expanded it recently for the next decade. Note the conspicuous absence of profit.

https://www.tesla.com/en_GB/blog/master-plan-part-deux

> If profit wasn't his original objective, which might be true, the minute he raised capital from investors it became the goal.

Or the expectation. I believe he’s on record stating his regret at having to take Tesla public to raise the needed funds, and he’s certainly not doing the same with SpaceX for this very reason.

Every time he’s been at risk of turning a profit he’s leveraged that to scale up the vision another order of magnitude. Perhaps that’ll stop with the model 3 and they’ll stop growth investment and turn a profit. If the investors force that it’ll be a sad day, but he will have achieved his goals.
tom_in_edinburgh - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> I'm afraid that's a consequence of capital markets and public share ownership. Running a plc mostly means spending your day managing financial analysts and, through them or directly, the expectations of shareholders. It's complex and technical and there's no doubt an accountant is best placed to understand those demands.

How come guys like Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk and Steve Jobs get to run huge companies in the US but in the UK it needs to be accountants and suits?

I think some of it has to do with the way in the UK almost all the stock market investment is going through fund managers in the City and where those fund managers are hired from. There's not enough individual investment and there aren't enough fund managers hiring people with a technology background. In the US there's big money managed from San Francisco and the banks/funds hire analysts out of tech companies because they want people who understand the industry.


1
BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh:
All three of those are technology disrupters. Microsoft is another. The guys running the companies are the ones who came up with a unique (or special) product. James Dyson runs his company for the same reason. And come to think of it, that's why I run mine and don't leave it to the bean counters, although I've had to become quite proficient with spreadsheets.

Certainly in the case of two or three of those they started as garage/bedroom enterprises without a coherent plan for world domination or in the case of FB, profit, ironically now very profitable. But something clicked to rocket them to success and the environment no doubt played its part. Maybe if LastMinute.com hadn't been such an overhyped damp squib the mood would different over here ;-)

It's certainly true that the US seems to be a more fertile breeding ground for mega corporations. And where technology is concerned, we're well behind not just the US but Japan, China, S Korea and soon India.
Post edited at 14:24
Stichtplate on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

Not so much developing the tech, just commercially exploiting it.
neilh - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to Stichtplate:

Maybe it’s better that we just recognise that we are good at developing it rather than desperately try and create the environment to exploit it. After all it’s been like this for years and nobody has ever been able to overcome this issue .

Graphene is another example.
wintertree - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh:

> How come guys like Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk and Steve Jobs get to run huge companies in the US but in the UK it needs to be accountants and suits?

I’m not clued up enough to give a reasoned argument about how the disparity got started - there was no shortage of talent or ideas in the UK throughout the tech boom - but it seems clear to me that we in the UK are locked in a trap. If you look at venture funds in the US that power many of the high tech startups to success, they’re funded by people who made their money in previous technology ventures, and they don’t just put money in - they bring expertise and involvement. I’m not aware of anything in the UK even vaguely comparable to the Founders Fund for example - we seem to be replete with “city finance” types looking for their piece of the next big thing, but weak in mega/giga rich people from that world looking to help the next generation.
Post edited at 15:37
summo on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> Certainly in the case of two or three of those they started as garage/bedroom enterprises without a coherent plan for world domination or in the case of FB, profit, ironically now very profitable. But something clicked to rocket them to success and the environment no doubt played its part. Maybe if LastMinute.com hadn't been such an overhyped damp squib the mood would different over here ;-)

Friends reunited springs to mind.

Folk like new things, even if they effectively do the same as old. Skype or msn messenger are perfectly functional, but WhatsApp is taking over, and it's essentially do the same thing.

BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:

We have a culture in the UK that encourages entrepreneurs to think early about their exit and the attainment of personal financial security. It's very hard work to build a company that someone would want to buy, but, that level having been attained, it's not difficult to find larger, often multinational, accountant-led businesses to pay you off. I've done just that three times now and do wonder whether I should have more patience!!

Of course, most businesses aren't disruptive in the manner of technology enterprises and it should be acknowledged that the potential for a few winners to go very big is far higher than for other sectors. Perhaps however the prevailing culture of selling early pervades this sector too. Most of the entrepreneurs I know are, like me, on the latest of many ventures, rarely their first.
neilh - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:
Size of market? There is no comparison with the USA. California on its own is a huge economic powerhouse.


Alot of our entrepreneurial activity also takes place in the city.we just tend to think of it as full of bankers.
neilh - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:
Failing is also considered to be a sign of potential success in the USA.
BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to neilh:

> Failing is also considered to be a sign of potential success in the USA.

Yes, that's an interesting cultural distinction. That observation perhaps better describes the views of non-entrepreneurs, and I can see how it might affect the behaviour of investors. I don't think entrepreneurs fear failure on either side of the Atlantic.
Ian W - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> I'm afraid that's a consequence of capital markets and public share ownership. Running a plc mostly means spending your day managing financial analysts and, through them or directly, the expectations of shareholders. It's complex and technical and there's no doubt an accountant is best placed to understand those demands. The CEO will always have final say on strategy but the actual running of the company is done by the divisional directors with more direct experience of their areas of responsibility.

> The biggest danger is that the demands of shareholders and the best interests of the company and its staff are not always well aligned and the best CEOs will reconcile those conflicts.

> Edit to add: I'm not an accountant btw

I am though, and you are pretty spot on!
Although I dont really like the criticism of Tesla and his business practices, although each to their own. I do like the way he manages to produce massive innovative leaps, and products that have the wow factor (the cars) or are so far ahead of anything else (the battery packs). Maybe that will be his downfall, the fact tat he is so far ahead of what any other organisation or government is doing......it will be a pity if he fails, but even if he does, he will have changed the game siginficantly.
Ian W - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:

> I’m not clued up enough to give a reasoned argument about how the disparity got started - there was no shortage of talent or ideas in the UK throughout the tech boom - but it seems clear to me that we in the UK are locked in a trap. If you look at venture funds in the US that power many of the high tech startups to success, they’re funded by people who made their money in previous technology ventures, and they don’t just put money in - they bring expertise and involvement. I’m not aware of anything in the UK even vaguely comparable to the Founders Fund for example - we seem to be replete with “city finance” types looking for their piece of the next big thing, but weak in mega/giga rich people from that world looking to help the next generation.

You think they dont employ suits?.........
Ian W - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> We have a culture in the UK that encourages entrepreneurs to think early about their exit and the attainment of personal financial security. It's very hard work to build a company that someone would want to buy, but, that level having been attained, it's not difficult to find larger, often multinational, accountant-led businesses to pay you off. I've done just that three times now and do wonder whether I should have more patience!!

> Of course, most businesses aren't disruptive in the manner of technology enterprises and it should be acknowledged that the potential for a few winners to go very big is far higher than for other sectors. Perhaps however the prevailing culture of selling early pervades this sector too. Most of the entrepreneurs I know are, like me, on the latest of many ventures, rarely their first.

Do you find that at the point of selling, you have reached a "plateau" where to take the business to the next level you need a significant injection of funds that the business (or you) are unwilling / unable to input, and if you stayed around, you would lose much of the autonomy of the company, and move on to the next idea to develop?
neilh - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to Ian W:

By the way my USA contacts view Musk has a very good recipient of tax dollars from the Federal govt to fund his plans.
BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to Ian W:

> Do you find that at the point of selling, you have reached a "plateau" where to take the business to the next level you need a significant injection of funds that the business (or you) are unwilling / unable to input, and if you stayed around, you would lose much of the autonomy of the company, and move on to the next idea to develop?

On the first observation, quite the opposite. Following each sale my companies have continued on a strong growth curve. That's partly to do with the way deals are typically constructed with an earn-out that keeps the former owner at the helm for a limited period with strong incentives to encourage growth. But it also reflects the effort to get a company into a saleable shape. This tends to create a lot of momentum from which the new owner benefits. Finally, I do cherish a reputation which reassures potential buyers to get the chequebook out. And that's based on the trajectory of my previous enterprises. It doesn't pay to disappoint.

Each time the trigger for sale has been external to the company's fortunes. Once to secure my financial security, a second time to start a new enterprise, and most recently because I promised to myself to sever ties when my youngest went to university.

Where you're definitely on track would be in your suggestion that I might be looking for the next project. There's no doubt that each enterprise sustains my interest for a limited period before I want to test myself in new ways. Mind you, the recent sale came after 14 years of ownership almost to the day, and that might be stretching the definition of "limited".
Ian W - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

Just asked because the 2 serial entrpreneurs i know do it for different reasons - one has a low boredom threshold, gets bored, has a new idea and moves on, the other just gets it to a point where he cant take it any further himself; hates the idea of not being in full control , prepares it for sale, and gets out. Both are very successful ,have a good income and have provided employment for many others, so both clearly successful. I also understand your motivations for getting out, and also for the momentum created in businesses. This i think is almost inevitable given the situation.
And yes, 14 years is pushing it, but hey, why not? The 14 year one must have just been more interesting!
BnB - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to Ian W:

> And yes, 14 years is pushing it, but hey, why not? The 14 year one must have just been more interesting!

With the first business I felt under more financial pressure to obtain a quick return, which fortunately only took a couple of years. With that safely tucked away I felt more relaxed about the subsequent projects and built the recent enterprise to achieve market position and a good dividend. That takes more time and over the years it came to resemble a second family. Management and parenting have a lot in common!!
wintertree - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to Ian W:

> You think they dont employ suits?.........

I didn’t say that. Compared to the US, we seem to have a paucity of early stage investors in high tech stuff whose funds and experience came itself from high tech stuff. A lot more of the money and people in the UK seem to come from more established lines of business/property.

I’m suggesting this might provide less of a good environment for tech stuff compared to the USA. I could be barking up totally the wrong tree.
Ian W - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> With the first business I felt under more financial pressure to obtain a quick return, which fortunately only took a couple of years. With that safely tucked away I felt more relaxed about the subsequent projects and built the recent enterprise to achieve market position and a good dividend. That takes more time and over the years it came to resemble a second family. Management and parenting have a lot in common!!

Not wrnog there! I'm not an entrepreneur so much, but in senior management, and the amount of times i've been heard muttering "it s worse than having kids"..........
Ian W - on 03 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:

> I didn’t say that. Compared to the US, we seem to have a paucity of early stage investors in high tech stuff whose funds and experience came itself from high tech stuff. A lot more of the money and people in the UK seem to come from more established lines of business/property.

> I’m suggesting this might provide less of a good environment for tech stuff compared to the USA. I could be barking up totally the wrong tree.

Yes, I know.......

but yes I also agree it is much easier to find funding for more "outlandish" projects in the USA than in the UK. Whenever I've had to raise finance in the UK, I've always been amazed how risk averse UK institutions are, and none of the things i've been involved in could be descibed as particularly outlandish.
mind you the regulatory framework in the UK also contributes, especially after the banking crash / crisis....so no, i dont think you are barking up the wrong tree.
RomTheBear on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> The argument goes that Tesla is a bubble. Its capitalisation is greater than Ford or GM despite barely yet building any cars.

The answer is staring you in the face. Tesla is not a car company. Their core business is not to sell cars, it's to provide the platform on which sustainable energy and transport will be built.
Hence the Gigafactories, which are not producing cars, but batteries.

Making cool sexy electric cars is just a way to disrupt the market. All of this is very similar to Amazon. They started selling books but they were never in the books business. Rather they provided the infrastructure on which online commerce woudl take place. Much more profitable than selling books ;-)


wintertree - on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to RomTheBear:

I seem to agree with you Rom. Stone the crows.

> All of this is very similar to Amazon.

And like Amazon for much of its existence, Tesla is continually ploughing all it can spare from it’s income and from investors into the next phase of their growth, and showing no profit - or a loss if you choose to look at it that myopically.

Interestingly Jeff Bezos appears to have done this with Amazon partly to fund his private space program, which is comparable in scale and ambition to Musk’s venture. Bezos is now cashing in up to $1Bn a year from his Amazon wealth to fund Blue Origin.

Musk never had that level of funds available. Mind you it looks like he just made $1m in a few weeks by selling Booring Company baseball hats to find his tunneling project...
Post edited at 18:25
aln - on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to aln:

I'm glad I started this thread. There's been some interesting debate, with no mud-slinging so far, and I've learned a few things.
krikoman - on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> The argument goes that Tesla is a bubble. Its capitalisation is greater than Ford or GM despite barely yet building any cars.

Musk is more than Tesla though, isn't he?

And if by showman you mean he says things then gets them done, e.g. the battery station in Australia within 100 days, then yes! And maybe we could do with more of them.

It would be a bit better for the UK if their contractors stuck to the price and time constraints they take on when accepting contracts.
BnB - on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to krikoman:
> Musk is more than Tesla though, isn't he?

> And if by showman you mean he says things then gets them done, e.g. the battery station in Australia within 100 days, then yes! And maybe we could do with more of them.

He said he would be producing 5000 model 3s a week. He built fewer than 200 in the whole of November. It would be interesting to know whether, say Rom or wintertree, would (or have) put their money where their mouth is. It's one thing to cheer on an idea, quite another to fund it!!

I never said I wasn't an admirer. I think he's a very persuasive businessman with big ideas. Far bigger than I'm capable of. But I think he's a gambler first and a deliverer second and I'm glad it's not my money that he's bet on red.

I wish him all the success in the world nevertheless.
Post edited at 20:16
wintertree - on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> It would be interesting to know whether, say Rom or wintertree, would (or have) put their money where their mouth is. It's one thing to cheer on an idea, quite another to fund it!!

If I’d had the money when the model-s launched, I’d have bought stock without a doubt - but I was saving hard for a family house.

I wouldn’t buy now as the insane stock value really is a gamble on sorting out the model-3 production bugs/production hell. However as I said before I think it’s a gamble not a bubble. I certainly don’t think they’ve been deceitful as alluded to above - just ambitious. Incompetence in being a year late in scaling up manufacturing? I don’t think so - they’re piloting all sorts of advanced manufacturing methods far ahead of the industry standard, that will benefit consumers greatly down the line.

Mind you if the founders edition roadster (full price down now delivery post 2020) sells out he’s got another $375m to help sort it out, from people who in no way are having the wool pulled over their eyes. They know the deal.

I haven’t put a deposit down on a model-3 because I detest the touchscreen-only mentality. I might get a second hand -S after another year or two’s depreciation. All new cars annoy me with their screens mind. For now I’ve got a Leaf, and I’m hoping my new venture will make me enough money for a pure-electric BMW i8 when that launches in the future as I’m sure it will. You never know...

If SpaceX were selling stock (they won’t - many more holders and they’d have to go public, against their will, by US rules) I’d buy purely to support them, not looking for a return. I’ve made a similar offer to Reaction Engines but they don’t seem interested in anything of a personal scale. I don’t think RE have a hope in hell of competing with SpaceX or BlueOrigin in launch costs, even ignoring the fact they’re at minimum decade from commercial operations. But I’ve wanted to see HOTOL and the Avro 730 fly since I was 7 years old, and I think their engine technology - and the pre-cooler technology alone - has so much value beyond space launch that its worth perusing, and the gentler experience of their launch cycle will bring customers.

I’m planning to install 10 kw (nameplate) of rooftop solar slate-effect PV and a bigger battery self-consumption and backup system than I currently have. (Along with our smaller 2 kw solar-pv system). Tesla are top of the list for the solar slates if their solar roofing comes to market in a reasonable time... (I have a small test system with a competing solar slate product that I’dd happily fall back to, but nobody else comes close to matching the price/performance of their battery+inverter combo; however it doesn’t currently have a regulatory approved anti-islanding system for grid backup use in the UK).

When I get a moment I’m buying a Booring Conpany hat!
Post edited at 20:27
BnB - on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:

Hats off to you for your enthusiasm

Skip the model S. It's a bit shit. Hold out for the new i8 or, better still, Mission E. Tesla doesn't have BMW or Porsche's nous when it comes to driver involvement.
1
RomTheBear on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:
> He said he would be producing 5000 model 3s a week. He built fewer than 200 in the whole of November. It would be interesting to know whether, say Rom or wintertree, would (or have) put their money where their mouth is. It's one thing to cheer on an idea, quite another to fund it!!

Not cheering anything, just pointing out that it seems short sighted to value Tesla on the basis on their car sales, simply because it’s not really a car business.
This doesn’t mean it’s not a risky investment, certainly more risk that I would be personally willing to shoulder.
Post edited at 21:02
wintertree - on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> Skip the model S. It's a bit shit. Hold out for the new i8 or, better still, Mission E. Tesla doesn't have BMW or Porsche's nous when it comes to driver involvement.

This is the dilemma - there is so much excitement coming. I’ve had a look at a early model S and it’s not got the fit and finish I’d expect for the price - by a mile.

What I really want is a plug-in hybrid replacement for my 3-series convertible. One that has a steering wheel, a speed gauge, stop and go pedals and no computer screens. Test drove a used i8 - the iDrive screen annoyed me and the electronically relayed engine noise made my skin crawl (1). It’s the closest I’ve found to a car that makes me grin like the MP4-12C I had use of for a few days. Give the new convertible i8 a few years depreciation... Gives me a bit more time to loose some more common sense...

(1) honestly what simpering halfwit designed this? You can instantly tell that it’s coming through a microphone and crappy car speakers. As I understand it, it’s real engine noise boosted in to the cabin. It was horrible, it offended my very being. BMW dealer insisted it can’t be disabled. If I did get one I would bloody well fix it.
Post edited at 21:14
BnB - on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:

Tell me about it. My last Porsche (but one, ahem) had a sound inlet for induction noise that drove me so bonkers I put a sock in it. Literally.
1
Deadeye - on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to captain paranoia:

> Possibly.

> With his space launch vehicles and autonomous electric cars?

> No.

'kin hell. And you've done what?

I like the guy. He has put his money where his mouth is and moved de-carbonisation forward a long way. Yes there are lots of gimicks, but the town-scale ion-flow batteries are a real step forward. Autonomous, electric cars will have a much lower carbon footprint than petrol, human-controlled ones.

Instead of sitting on the sidelines chucking rocks why not do something. And, if you do, then bloody well give that a positive push rather than whining about the efforts of others.
captain paranoia - on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to Deadeye:

> kin hell. And you've done what?

Things you won't have heard about, mostly.

I simply answered two questions, as accurately as I could. I made no critical assessment of the man, or his business. You've made a lot out of those two answers, none of which was my intent.
2
aln - on 04 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree For now I’ve got a Leaf,

The worst name ever for a car.
wintertree - on 05 Dec 2017
In reply to aln:

> In reply to wintertree For now I’ve got a Leaf,

> The worst name ever for a car.

Edsel?
aln - on 05 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:

> Edsel?

Hmmm...nah, Leaf's worse
Bjartur i Sumarhus on 05 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:

> Tell me about it. My last Porsche (but one, ahem) had a sound inlet for induction noise that drove me so bonkers I put a sock in it. Literally.

I might try the sock trick with my kids in the back . If Musk can solve shutting them up, he's an instant zillionaire
Bjartur i Sumarhus on 05 Dec 2017
In reply to aln:

Duster?
Blue Straggler - on 05 Dec 2017
In reply to wintertree:

> Edsel?

You do know what the alternative names for the Edsel, offered by the lady commissioned to name it, were, yes?
I daresay Ford looked at them, got in a panic and just made something up quickly.

Look up Marianne Moore.

I liked her names but they probably wouldn't have sold well.

I still think Ford Probe was the worst

RomTheBear on 05 Dec 2017
In reply to BnB:
> Tell me about it. My last Porsche (but one, ahem) had a sound inlet for induction noise that drove me so bonkers I put a sock in it. Literally.

#firstworldproblem
Post edited at 12:33
Rob Naylor - on 05 Dec 2017
In reply to aln:

> Is he really an entrepreneur who cares? Is he gonna save the world?

Dunno, as regards electric cars and space vehicles, but the hyperloop is a ludicrous fantasy!
Michael Hood - on 05 Dec 2017
In reply to aln: I think he is trying to advance technologies that will increase the likelihood of the human race surviving.

Key amongst those is not being totally dependent on just one rock - hence Space X and the FBR.

Have a look at the waitbutwhy website/blog, it gives some interesting stuff on Musk as well as lots of other subjects. The procrastination ones are great if you're into that.

krikoman - on 05 Dec 2017
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

> Duster?

Fister?
paul mitchell - on 07 Dec 2017
In reply to aln:

It's up to thee 'n' me to save the world.Expecting industrialists and politicians to do it for us is rather naïve.
If you drive a car or take loads of holidays by plane,or don't insulate your house,time to wake up.
aln - on 07 Dec 2017
In reply to paul mitchell:

I don't expect that. The answers above about Musk developing technologies in the hope that others will take up the baton, is in line with my own thoughts. I drive a car for a living and I expect you take more holidays by plane than I do. My flat's been cavity wall insulated by the council, warm and cheap to heat.
owlart - on 07 Dec 2017
In reply to paul mitchell:
> (In reply to aln)
> If you drive a car or take loads of holidays by plane,or don't insulate your house,time to wake up.

I live in a rented first floor flat with no wall insulation (the walls are stone cold at this time of year, even with the heating on full). The other flats in the block are either owner-occupied or let by different landlords. As far as I can see, there's no incentive for my landlord (or is it down to the freehold owner?) to install insulation at their expense when it doesn't save them any money on their bill, only on mine. I suspect that the difference in rent they could charge for somewhere with cavity insulation isn't significant enough to warrant the investment. Also, is it possible to insulate only a first floor flat, or would it require the flats below (and above?) to be done too? It needs some sort of central (government/council?) incentive scheme to get these fixed. I can't be the only person with this issue.

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