Elon Musk’s worth dips €3.5bn after poor Tesla Q4 earnings

11 Feb 2016

As the results for Q4 2015 for Tesla are announced, showing huge losses, its founder Elon Musk’s personal worth has dipped by $3.5bn due to a fall in stock prices.

If ever there was a company that was going to come out of a very poor financial quarter with something to be boastful about, it’s Tesla.

The electric vehicle (EV) and home energy storage company last night (10 February) posted its financial results for Q4 2015, which showed the company is living well beyond its means, financially at least.

According to its report, despite revenues of $1.75bn for the quarter, the company had an eye-watering loss of $114m, with revenues also coming in below market estimates of $1.8bn.

This is further compounded when looking at its losses on an unadjusted basis with, in that cases, losses totalling $230m.

Speaking of the losses, the company’s founder Elon Musk addressed the obvious financial worries as the result of overstretching their ambitions in 2015, but the company has no reason to worry, it seems, is its number of deliveries for Q4 was impressive.

For the quarter, the company says it made 17,478 deliveries of its cars, which is considerably more than the 11,603 it achieved in Q3.

This means its global deliveries have increased year-on-year by 76pc, which is certainly not something to sniff at.

Model 3 launch date announced

Meanwhile, its battery business – as seen with its Powerwall unit – has made a profit, according to the report, in its initial targeted markets of Germany and Australia.

However, it’s the company share price that has raised the most interest. Market analysts expected Tesla to post earnings of $0.10 per share, but share value actually fell by $0.85 per share.

This has had a considerable knock-on effect for Musk, whose holdings in Tesla and the solar energy plant group SolarCity have now taken a total hit of $3.5bn since the end of last year.

It now remains to seen what will happen with Tesla this year, with Musk saying the company expects to see a profit this year, which led to a minor stock recovery of 10pc in after-hours trading.

Much of these profitable hopes rest on the details revealed during the earnings report of the announcement of its first affordable EV in the US, the Model 3, which will cost $35,000 when it opens for pre-orders on 31 March, for sale sometime in late 2017.

Tesla badge image via Hadrian/Shutterstock

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic