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The Cult of Musk is creaking


It’s incredible what about $800bn of wealth destruction can do to a cult of personality, even one as powerful as the one surrounding the World’s Most Terminally Divorced Man.

Last Friday our colleagues at the FT ran a great “big read” on the souring view on Tesla, which sums up the company’s operational challenges and the sea change in opinions even among fans. It seems like many are belatedly discovering the value of strong, independent boards and focused, non-shitposting CEOs. Yes, we know.

The latest big Tesla überbull and self-described Musk “fanboy” to vent their feelings online is Leo KoGuan, an IT billionaire that estimates that he is Tesla’s third-biggest individual shareholder, with 23.4mn shares.

Back in the halcyon days of late 2021 KoGuan was saying that “I live or die with Tesla”. As recently as December he was declaring a “peace” with Musk after suggesting he should step down, and insisting that “Tesla is so cheap, I buy buy buy Tesla Tesla Tesla”.

But the peace doesn’t seem to have lasted into the new year.

Over the past week or so KoGuan has been arguing that the company is in a “desperate” situation, asked the SEC to investigate the supine board, called Tesla bulls “blind cult worshippers”, and said that Musk “is running away with another seductive beauty that seduces the world with her power” (we think he means Twitter rather than whoever Musk has chosen as his next baby receptacle).

Ross Gerber of Gerber Kawasaki is another prominent Tesla überbull whose faith has been tested lately. Despite insisting that “Elon and Tesla are going to make a comeback with a vengeance” he is now planning to run for a spot on Tesla’s board which he blames for the vacuum at the top of the company.

The Future Fund’s Gary Black has also become notably more critical of Tesla and Musk himself, and seems . . . unconvinced by the argument that Tesla’s share price performance is just because of interest rate increases.

Tesla Economist, a well-known YouTuber on the company, has also had a change of heart lately.

But Musk can console himself that there are still some true believers that remain undeterred by 70 per cent plus drawdowns!



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