Do you know that Elon Musk’s Tesla was once on the brink of bankruptcy? Let’s have a look at the significant milestones covered by Tesla:
In July 2003, the company was founded by engineers Marc Tarpenning and Martin Eberhard. Elon Musk, Ian Wright, and JB Straubel joined soon afterward.
In August 2006, Elon Musk stepped forward and revealed his vision for Tesla: to make way for a solar electric economy.
In December 2007, Ze’ev Drori took the reins of Tesla. Drori’s first goal was to introduce Roadster – Tesla’s first car – to the market.
Drori’s appointment turned out to be a masterstroke. Roadster went into production on time. On the 1st February 2008, Roadster was delivered to Elon Musk, who served as Tesla’s chairman. One and a half months later, Roadster’s production was up and running.
However, the financial crisis of 2008-2009 threatened Tesla, and the company weathered a tough time; many employees were laid off. At this time, Musk decided to take matters in his own hands and became the chairman of Tesla. One of his first decisions was to postpone the launch of the Model S. In October 2008, Tesla was close to bankruptcy as the global financial crisis hung over its head.
One month later, in November 2008, the company continued to decline. It was at that time the board of directors finalized $40 million for convertible debt financing. The move helped Tesla rise again.
In March 2009, Tesla revealed the Model S – its first electric sedan. To finance Tesla, Daimler invested $50 million and took a 10 percent stake. The Department of Energy further boosted the company with a $465 million loan.
On 29th June 2010, the company went public; it provided 13.3 million shares where each share cost $17 per share. Soon, it raised $226 million.
In October 2011, the company unveiled a prototype of the Model S, a car that served as the base for its future cars. According to Musk, it could go from 0 to 60 mph in less than 5 seconds!
Less than a year later, Tesla revealed the prototype of its first crossover SUV: Model X. This model received universal critical acclaim. In February 2014, the company had earned over $40 million in sales. Due to the success of the Model X, the company increased 2,800% in value.
In February 2014, the company announced its intent to create a huge battery factory, dubbed as, Gigafactory. By October, Storey, Nevada was chosen as the factory site and 2,864 acres of land were allocated to it. In the same month, Musk disclosed Autoplot, an autonomous self-driving system that would be installed in all the future Tesla cars.
In April 2015, the company unveiled Powerpack – a battery used for commercial purposes and Powerwall – a large rechargeable battery for residential purposes. By September, the delivery of the Model X was initiated. A month later, the company rolled out Autopilot.
Musk unveiled Model 3, Tesla’s first mass-market car, in March 2016. By July, Tesla made an announcement to buy SolarCity for $2.6 billion. In the next month, Musk unveiled the Tesla Master Plan Part Deux. In November, it integrated more automation with the purchase of a German engineering company. Two weeks later, the company announced to enter the solar business.
At the beginning of 2017, in January, the federal government cleared Tesla Autopilot of any defects.
In March, Tesla introduced the Model Y SUV. This model is designed for mass-market consumption and is expected to be its best selling vehicle.