Tesla market value crosses $800 billion for the first time

SABC News Tesla Reuters - Tesla market value crosses $800 billion for the first time

Shares of Tesla Inc jumped as much as 5.6% on Friday, pushing the electric-car maker’s market capitalization to more than $800 billion for the first time ever and inching closer to the trillion-dollar club.

Tesla’s stratospheric rally has helped Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk surpass Amazon.com Inc’s top boss Jeff Bezos to become the world’s richest man, Bloomberg News reported on Thursday.

At today’s session high, Musk’s 21% stake in the automaker as per Forbes contributes more than $170 billion to his net worth, dwarfing the combined market capitalization of General Motors, Ford Motor Co and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, the three Detroit automakers.

In the previous session, Tesla’s market value crossed $774 billion, making it Wall Street’s fifth most valuable company, just behind Google-parent Alphabet Inc and ahead of social media giant Facebook Inc.

The company’s fortunes is an anomaly as the 17-year-old automaker has production that is just a fraction of large rivals by sales such as Toyota Motor, Volkswagen and General Motors.

Musk’s personal wealth has been boosted by last year’s more than eight-fold surge in the shares of Tesla, which became the world’s most valuable carmaker.

He has a 20% stake in the carmaker and about $42 billion of unrealised paper gains on vested stock options, according to the Bloomberg report.

Tesla shares were up as much as 7.4% on Thursday at a record high of $811.61.

The Forbes Billionaires List, however, said Musk still trails Amazon’s Bezos by $7.8 billion.

Forbes has a more conservative estimate based on the Tesla stake that he has pledged as collateral for personal loans. To take that into account, it applies a 25% discount to his shareholding, according to its report in November.

Musk, who co-founded and sold Internet payments company PayPal Holdings Inc, now leads some of the most futuristic companies in the world.

Besides Tesla, he heads rocket company SpaceX and Neuralink, a startup that is developing ultra-high bandwidth brain-machine interfaces to connect the human brain to computers.

He set up the Boring Company to make affordable tunnels below busy city streets for an all-electric public transportation system to avoid the nasty traffic jams in US cities.

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