Posts Tagged: "SolarCity Corp"

The new Elon Musk master plan for Tesla reeks of overconfidence

Elon Musk’s updated master plan reeks of overconfidence. He envisions entire fleets of autonomous Tesla vehicles while missing recent sales targets by thousands of units. He wants to pump massive amounts of money into R&D for autonomous technologies and new types of vehicles, but the company is having trouble with bleeding warranty costs which are double the amount seen at Ford or GM. The lack of timeline details in the master plan was not well received by financial analysts and Tesla stock was down by 3 percent in the days after the announcement.

Signs of turbulence in Musk’s business holdings grow as SolarCity reduces jobs commitment at Buffalo, NY plant

SolarCity was a little more muted on the topic of how many jobs it would create in Buffalo, and yet those promises are still being broken. News reports from the area pinned a definitive number on exactly how many jobs the Buffalo plant will create: 1,460. This included, according to news reports, at least 1,000 production jobs to create shifts of 300 to 400 workers which could operate the plant around the clock. A reported 400 jobs would be for engineers and require at least a bachelor’s degree. Residents of the city (including this writer) can tell you that, although the city has shown signs of pulling itself out of a decades-long depression, many hopes involving Buffalo’s immediate economic futures have been pinned on SolarCity, and the state has backed that hope up to the tune of $750 million. This represents most of the cash set aside for Cuomo’s Buffalo Billion initiative which is currently under heavy investigation by U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara based on a series of subpoenas issued by federal prosecutors over the past year.

Elon Musk patent hypocrisy on display in growing SolarCity patent portfolio

Elon Musk also has a bizarro acquaintance with the truth, at least when it comes to patents. In his All Our Patent Are Belong To You [sic] blog post, which has served as the seminal moment for the current open-source trend in the auto industry, Musk stated that since his departure from Zip2, a previous business venture, in 1999, that he has “avoided [patents] whenever possible.” That anti-patent sentiment has raised Musk to rockstar status in the eyes of some, but even a cursory review of the facts suggests that Musk does not practice what he preaches. The fact that we can do a profile of patents issued by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to SolarCity in this year alone proves that, at least where it comes to patents, Elon Musk’s message is at best a “do as I say not as I do” approach to business. At worst, Musk is not true to his word.