More details on the purchase that never was. Google wanted to buy Tesla a few years ago. Claudia Assis:
A book due out next month makes a surprise claim about Tesla Motors Inc.: the electric-car maker was in such dire straits in early 2013 that it almost was sold to Google Inc.
At the time, Tesla TSLA was struggling to turn Model S preorders into actual sales, and Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk turned to his friend Larry Page, Google’s co-founder and chief executive.
What was wrong with Tesla at the time?
The depth of Tesla’s troubles had been hidden from Musk. After he found out, he fired some senior executives and promoted other employees. He also ordered some employees to work on closing car sales, regardless of their actual jobs
Sales make a lot of problems go away. What’s the Google connection?
Simultaneously, Musk proposed that Google buy Tesla and assure him it would spend $5 billion in a factory expansion. He also wanted assurances that Google wouldn’t break up or shut down Tesla before Tesla’s third-generation mass-market electric car, now named Model 3, was done. Musk also insisted that Page let him run a Google-owned Tesla for eight years, or until it mass-market car was ready
Why didn’t Google bite? Actually, Tesla sales increased steadily and Musk decided he didn’t need a savior. Tesla still loses $9,000 on every car it sells.