Tesla Motors has filed for its IPO, and in the process become the latest cash-hemorrhaging green tech company to try to go public.
The registration statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission states that the company has accumulated $108.2 million in revenue since its inception and has piled up an accumulated deficit of $236.4 million. That breaks down into a $30 million loss in 2006, a $78.2 million loss in 2007, an $82.8 million loss in 2008 and $31.5 million loss in 2009. However, Tesla didn't start selling cars commercially until the middle of 2008, after a series of delays the year before.
Tesla is seeking up to $100 million in the IPO.
Although Tesla is in the red, it's important to point out that A123 Systems (AONE) and EnerNoc (ENOC) were also in debt when they went public.
Tesla reports having sold 937 cars through December 2009 to customers in 18 countries.
- Tesla delivered the first right-hand version of the Tesla Roadster in January 2010. The company said last fall that it was working on a car like this for release first in England and then in parts of Asia. It also delivered its first batteries to Daimler (DAI) for use in the company's electric smart car last November.
- The company has already booked 2,000 reservations for the Model S, the all-electric sedan that enters volume production in 2012. Customers have to put down a $5,000 refundable deposit to get on the waiting list. In November alone, Tesla processed 1,800 reservations.
- The Model S will likely make its appearance a little later than expected. The S-1 stated that volume production will begin in 2012. The company has said the car would be introduced in late 2011 and that the first commerically available models would come out in the 2012 model year. Thus, expect a few token cars next year and more the year after. But volumes will likely ramp up quickly after that; the target annual production volume is 20,000 cars. The Model S will cost $57,400, as expected. With the federal tax credit, the price effectively becomes $49,900. According to the S-1,
In order to meet customer range expectations, we are designing the planned Model S to offer a variety of range options from 160 miles to 300 miles on a single charge, as projected using the EPA's combined two-cycle city/highway test. The EPA has announced its intention to develop and establish new energy efficiency testing methodologies for electric vehicles, which we believe could result in a significant decrease to the advertised ranges of all electric vehicles, including ours. The Model S is being designed to be charged at home, but we are also planning to offer the capability to fast charge the vehicle in as little as forty-five minutes at commercial charging stations that we anticipate may be available in the future. The Model S battery pack is also being designed with the capability of being rapidly swapped out at specialized commercial battery pack exchange facilities that we anticipate may be available in the future.
- Commercial vans, SUVs and other types of cars may be developed in the future. The Model S is based around a flexible platform that can accommodate different types of car designs. Ford Motor Co. (F) has adopted a similar approach to its economy cars and sedans to cut down costs and leverage common components.
- The company will need approximately $100 to $125 million in capital expenditures this year. A good portion of these funds will go to building the Model S manufacturing facility and the powertrain manufacturing facility. Half of the money raised through the IPO will be put into an account to pre-fund items that ordinarily would be paid by the $465 million loan from the Department of Energy.
- Tesla had 514 employees at the end of last year. Elon Musk, CEO, gets paid a nominal salary of $1 a year, but minimum wage laws in California require that he pay taxes as if he made $33,000. Battery whiz J.B. Straubel gets $205,000 this year. The executives at this level do not get bonuses. Mighty proper of you, Guv'nor.
- Tesla harvests 2,000 components from over 150 suppliers worldwide to build its cars. Some are single-source suppliers. That's just one for you component junkies. “A change in our supplier for our carbon fiber body panels contributed to the delay in our ability to ramp our production of the Tesla Roadster. Since we have no fixed pricing arrangements with any of our component suppliers other than Lotus, our component suppliers could increase their prices with little or no notice to us, which could harm our financial condition and operating results if we are unable to pass such price increases along to our customers," the S-1 states.
- Speaking of components, Tesla has fully qualified only one supplier of components. Earlier this year, the company confirmed that Panasonic (PC) has become its new battery supplier.
- Tesla also got $31 million in tax incentives from the State of California. The federal figure has been public but the California number has not been revealed until now, I believe.
- The S-1 includes a capitalization table on page 55, but there are a lot of blanks. Suffice it to say that for now that the main owners appear to be Musk, Al Wahada Capital, a fund owned by the power and water authority of Abu Dhabi (the head of the water authority is a board member) and Blackstar Investco, an investment arm of Daimler.
- Musk is likely to stick around for a while. If he steps down from the role of CEO in 2010 (except in cases of death or debilitation) and Daimler does not consent to the new CEO, Daimler can pull out of its collaboration with Tesla. If he is not Chairman or CEO in 2011 and Daimler doesn't like the personnel changes that have been made, it can still pull out of the deal. Additionally, if Musk "renders services to" other auto manufacturers, Daimler can end its partnership with the fledgling company.