Tuesday 14, August 2018 by Bloomberg

Musk working with Silver Lake, Goldman to take tesla private

 

Elon Musk said he’s working with Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and private-equity firm Silver Lake to take Tesla Inc. private, giving more credibility to the potential deal valued at more than $70 billion that he revealed last week.

The electric-car maker’s chief executive officer has also lined up legal advisers for the potential transaction, he said in a Twitter posting late Monday in California. A Tesla spokesman said Musk’s tweet refers to his own advisers and attorneys. Tesla board members didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

The posting is the latest in what’s been a piecemeal approach by Musk, 47, to explaining how he intends to pull off taking his money-losing electric-car maker private at a more than $70 billion market capitalisation.

Earlier Monday, Musk revealed that Saudi Arabia has long been interested in taking Tesla private, which gave him the confidence last week to drop the bombshell that he was considering the blockbuster potential deal.

Musk’s initial tweet about taking Tesla private hadn’t been cleared ahead of time with the company’s board, the New York Times reported, citing two unidentified people familiar with the chain of events.

A Goldman Sachs representative declined to comment, and Silver Lake representatives didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. Silver Lake isn’t currently discussing taking Tesla private with Musk, Reuters reported.

The law firms Musk said he is working with are Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen and & Katz, and Munger, Tolles & Olson.

Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund first approached Musk in early 2017 about taking Tesla off the market, he said in a blog post Monday. He confirmed the Public Investment Fund recently bought an almost five per cent stake and is interested in helping take Tesla private, as Bloomberg News reported Sunday.

Musk described a meeting late last month in which a managing director for the fund expressed regret that such a transaction hadn’t moved forward. “I left the July 31st meeting with no question that a deal with the Saudi sovereign fund could be closed, and that it was just a matter of getting the process moving,” Musk wrote, adding that this is why he tweeted on Tuesday that he had “funding secured” to take Tesla private at $420 a share.

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