Tesla held its annual shareholders’ meeting, which the company now calls its Cyber Roundup, at the Tesla Gigafactory Texas on Thursday.
The Cyber Roundup comes just weeks after Tesla reported its Q2 earnings, which showed quarterly revenue declines due to manufacturing challenges, even as the company grew year over year.
The agenda had 13 shareholder proposalsincluding one for a three-for-one stock split that appears to have contributed to a 0.40% increase in Tesla’s stock.
There were also several proposals to make Tesla more ethically responsible, especially after a series of lawsuits accusing the company of sexual, racial and gender harassment in the workplace.
Here are the event’s top five takeaways.
Tesla shareholders approved the three-for-one stock split, which will see the company’s stock drop to $300. However, it is not clear when that will take effect.
Tesla, always handy at how it uses Twitter to influence its stock price, initially tweeted news of the shareholder proposal on March 28. Between then and now, Tesla’s stock has seen a 20% rally from its June lows, when the drama of Musk’s proposed Twitter buy was at its peak. Shares rose to $928.55 in after-hours trading on Thursday.
Ethical improvements are unlikely to succeed
Shareholders have called for better reporting and transparency about reporting sexual, racial and gender harassment, as well as Tesla’s lobbying activities and the use of child labor to mine battery materials. They have also called for more diversity on the board to reflect Tesla’s workforce.
Although the votes are not yet in, preliminary results suggest that Tesla shareholders have voted against all such proposals.
The 2022 shareholders’ meeting, the first in a few years where hundreds of people could gather in person, took a boisterous tone from the start.
Investors in attendance shouted encouragement and questions about Musk. They also took their role as Tesla boosters to a new level. At one point, the crowd laughed at Laura Campos, director of corporate and political responsibility at the Nathan Cummings Foundation, as she spoke of her proposal to improve Tesla’s lobbying disclosures, and Tesla’s head of Investor Relations, Martin Viecha, applauded when he gave her the gagged as her time expired. Sister Dorothy of Sisters of the Good Shepherd was treated with the same derision – the audience laughed and applauded when she ran out of time when she asked the company to improve reporting on child labor in the cobalt supply chain.
Musk welcomed the cheers, applause and standing ovation and tapped into his biggest supporters – small investors. He edited the audience as he usually does, telling the audience that he loved them and that they were the “greatest audience,” while shouting statements of grandeur and making fun of his failed Twitter purchase.
Musk teased the idea of picking another gigafactory location later this year. He also noted that Tesla will likely build “at least 10 or 12 gigafactories.” In 2017, Musk said the company would build between 10 and 20 gigafactories in the long term.
Demand for Teslas remains high, so it’s no wonder Musk is looking to expand the automaker’s factory footprint. In recent weeks, Tesla has made its 3 millionth car, Musk said, reaffirming the company’s goal of reaching a run rate of 2 million cars by the end of 2022.
Musk reiterated his intention to rapidly grow Tesla’s advanced driver assistance system, fully self-driving (FSD) beta.
“We are now at over 40 million miles and I suspect we will have over 100 million miles this year,” Musk said. “And we’re still tracking a lot to have a widespread deployment of FSD beta in North America this year.”
Musk also promised some “cool stuff” on the Supercharger front, as Tesla prepares to allow non-Tesla EVs to use its charging network.
Additionally, Musk hinted that Cybertruck’s specs and price will be different from what was first announced in 2019 due to inflation, but didn’t provide further details.