Technology

Elon Musk says he's considering taking Tesla private

Tesla shares were halted Tuesday afternoon after CEO Elon Musk tweeted that he's thinking about taking the company private.

"Am considering taking Tesla private at $420. Funding secured," Musk said in the tweet.

"Shareholders could either to sell at 420 or hold shares & go private," he added later.

Some observers had questioned the legitimacy of the tweets, but those doubts were erased after Tesla posted an internal letter from Musk confirming that he was exploring the option.

Musk wrote that it would be ideal to restructure Tesla in the image of SpaceX, the commercial space company he founded, giving employees shares of the company and allowing them periodically to buy or sell them.

"Basically, I'm trying to accomplish an outcome where Tesla can operate at its best, free from as much distraction and short-term thinking as possible, and where there is as little change for all of our investors, including all of our employees, as possible," Musk wrote.

The CEO added that the proposal would be put up for a vote among Tesla's shareholders.

The company's shares, which opened the day at just under $344, rose 4 percent following Musk's tweet, then gave up some of those gains. The shares managed to bounce back to around $370 a share when trading was halted.

The stock had been up earlier in the day after The Financial Times reported a Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund had bought a $2 billion stake in Tesla.

It's unclear from where Musk has secured funding. The company underwent an initial public offering in 2010.

Updated at 3:54 p.m.

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