Musk testifies that he would have dumped SpaceX stock to take Tesla private in 2018

Fighting a lawsuit from Tesla shareholders, Musk defends tweets he made about the company in 2018.

Tesla shareholders are currently suing Elon Musk for tweets he made five years ago. In the tweets, the CEO talked about taking Tesla private, going as far as to say that funding had been secured to do so. That never ended up happening, and Tesla remains a publicly traded company. While defending himself in court, Musk claims that those tweets weren’t fraud. He even says that he would have dumped his SpaceX stock if that’s what it took to take Tesla private.

Musk’s comments were made during a court appearance in San Francisco this week, as we learned through CNBC. Testifying under oath, he clarified that he had made a verbal agreement with Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, though the deal never materialized. Even when that deal fell through, Musk believed that the entirety of his SpaceX shares would be enough to take Tesla private. “SpaceX stock alone meant ‘funding secured’ by itself. It’s not that I want to sell SpaceX stock but I could have, and if you look at the Twitter transaction — that is what I did. I sold Tesla stock to complete the Twitter transaction. And I would have done the same here.” Elon Musk is SpaceX’s largest shareholder.

Source: SpaceX

When Musk was originally chatting about taking Tesla private in 2018, he said that it would be done for $420 a share; a number that references marijuana (and has become an internet culture meme), one that Elon Musk is a well-documented fan of. Tesla shareholders’ attorney Nicholas L. Porritt of Levi & Korsinsky asked Musk if this was a joke. “There is some, I think, karma around 420… I should question whether that is good or bad karma at this point.”

In the time since those tweets, Elon Musk has become the CEO of Twitter. Ironically, this also happened mainly because of the billionaire’s tweets. As the class action lawsuit plays out, we’ll be following to see which side comes out on top. Be sure to bookmark Shacknews’ Elon Musk topic page for future updates.

Donovan is a young journalist from Maryland, who likes to game. His oldest gaming memory is playing Pajama Sam on his mom’s desktop during weekends. Pokémon Emerald, Halo 2, and the original Star Wars Battlefront 2 were some of the most influential titles in awakening his love for video games. After interning for Shacknews throughout college, Donovan graduated from Bowie State University in 2020 with a major in broadcast journalism and joined the team full-time. He is a huge Star Wars nerd and film fanatic that will talk with you about movies and games all day. You can follow him on twitter @Donimals_

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