Elon Musk cutting 9 per cent of Tesla workforce

Reuters

Electric auto maker Tesla Inc.is laying off about 3,600 workers mainly from its salaried ranks as it slashes costs in an effort to deliver on CEO Elon Musk's promise to turn a profit in the second half of the year.

Tesla Inc. (TSLA) is reversing out of its stagnant production troubles and making substantial progress, says a KeyBanc Capital Markets analyst.

"Profit is obviously not what motivates us", Musk wrote. Year-to-date, Tesla's headcount is up roughly 15%.

Last week, Musk said it's "quite likely" that Tesla will reach its goal of building 5,000 Model 3 cars per week by the end of the month. In addition to this company-wide restructuring, we've decided not to renew our residential sales agreement with Home Depot in order to focus our efforts on selling solar power in Tesla stores and online.

Mr Musk said the job cuts were a "difficult decision". Employees told the paper that they received "little or no warnings" before the firings, which reportedly targeted 400 to 700 employees, leading to "lowered morale through many departments".

Last week, Musk overcame an attempt to strip him of his role as chairman of Tesla's board, a plan introduced by a company shareholder who raised doubts about Musk's ability to manage multiple companies simultaneously.

He also predicted Tesla would be profitable in Q3 and Q4.

Tesla is ending its partnership with Home Depot and will remove its branded kiosks from as many as 800 of the home improvement chain's US stores by the end of the year. The company said the firings involved non-manufacturing positions and were unrelated to production delays involving the Model 3. He thanked departing employees for their hard work and said Tesla is providing "significant salary and stock vesting" to those being let go, based on their length of service.

Together, the Buffalo plant has more than 500 workers, Tesla has said.

"We are a small company in one of the toughest and most competitive industries on Earth", Musk wrote. We must continue to drive that forward for the good of the world.

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