Analysis: Here's Why Elon Musk Is Optimistic About The Tesla-SolarCity Merger


Tesla CEO Elon Musk is "pretty optimistic" that majority, if not all, of the company's shareholders will be approving the $2.6 billion deal to purchase SolarCity, a solar panel manufacturing company.

The merger aims to expand Tesla's clean energy business. The billionaire chairman of the two companies says he would be taken aback if the deal failed to push through next month.

'Quite A Few Naysayers'

Last week, Musk defended the Tesla-SolarCity merger, which has been heavily criticized over conflicts of interest right from the start. The Tesla CEO, after all, owns 19 percent of Tesla shares and 22 percent of SolarCity shares, making him the bigger shareholder of both companies.

Tesla is hoping that the $2.6 billion contract would increase the electric car manufacturer's balance sheet, possibly raking in $500 million in cash in the next three years.

In August, antitrust regulators gave the merger the go-signal, since the deal did not raise any concerns over anticompetitive practices.

SolarCity could bring in a minimum of $1 billion in profits by 2017 if the merger is approved by investors in a Nov. 17 stockholders' meeting.

"I'm pretty optimistic about where the vote is going," Musk told market analysts in a conference call last week.

Musk also shrugged off detractors who were worried that SolarCity's $3.35 billion debt and increasing losses would hamper Tesla as it speeds up production of the cheaper Model 3 in 2017.

"There's quite a few naysayers," he said, doubting just how good the naysayers are at calculating Tesla's performance.

"How good have they been at predicting the outcome for Tesla in the past? And if they have been uniformly?" he asked. "If they have a batting average of zero, you should really question whether their future predictions are going to be better."

In a blog post, Tesla made clear the public knew how it felt about "those same naysayers [who] may have similar feelings about solar and storage."

"It probably would be unwise to trust them again," the company wrote.

The Future Of Energy Generation?

Musk believes that merging SolarCity with Tesla would offer a seamless experience for potential customers who want to purchase solar roofs, solar panels and home batteries with ease.

If the deal pushes through, the two companies will speed up the shift to sustainable energy worldwide by producing and stocking up clean energy in homes, as well as developing vehicles that rely on clean energy.

"Indeed, we are just as confident that the future of energy generation will overwhelmingly consist of solar paired with an integrated storage system," the company added.

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