Elon Musk gets $4.3 million in stock pay for Model X work

Article by Anita Panait, on August 12, 2013

Tesla Motors Inc. co-founder and chief executive Elon Musk received $4.3 million in stock-based pay in the second quarter of 2013 for his work on the Model X sports. Musk’ s pay accounted for over 20 percent of the $19.3 million in stock-based compensation Tesla reported in the second quarter. The stock pay was one of three adjustments of over $16 million that the carmaker used to justify a $30.5-million net loss should be considered as a $26.3 million profit.

On the adjusted basis, Tesla posted a second-quarter profit of 20 cents a share, or 5 cents, excluding an adjustment for lease accounting. This surpassed the 20-cents-per-share loss average estimate of 10 analyst surveyed by Bloomberg, and was a primary factor in Thursday’s 14-percent surge of Tesla’s stock. Tesla reported its financial results for the second quarter of 2013 after the market closed on Wednesday.

Kevin Tynan, a Bloomberg Industries auto analyst, remarked that Tesla "is acting a lot more like a technology company than an automaker at this point." Excluding stock-based compensation from net income is more typical in technology companies in the Silicon Valley than in the global auto industry.

Tynan remarked that granting the stock options for development work that has yet to be completed does not pose a problem since that is not uncommon, especially if the person concerned is on target. Tesla reposted its first net profit in the first quarter of 2013 and Consumer Reports magazine has hailed its Model S electric sedan as one of the best cars ever made.

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