Tesla moves headquarters from Silicon Valley to Texas

Tesla will move its headquarters from California to Texas, where the electric vehicle maker is building a new factory, boss Elon Musk said Thursday.

The whimsical entrepreneur, who has repeatedly scrambled since the start of the pandemic with the California authorities over health rules he deemed too strict, himself left Los Angeles in 2020 after having lived there for a long time.

“I am happy to announce that we are moving our headquarters to Austin,” he said at Tesla’s annual general meeting of shareholders.

That doesn’t mean Tesla is completely leaving the West Coast, Musk said right away.

“To be clear, we will continue to expand our activities in California,” including increasing production at the Fremont plant, he said.

But, also remarked the entrepreneur, “one cannot expand to infinity in the bay of San Francisco”, where the density is important, the high cost of living and the circulation often difficult.

While in Austin, the plant is located “five minutes from the airport and fifteen minutes from downtown.”

Mr. Musk justified his personal move last year by the need to be as close as possible to the two projects which then occupied most of his time: the development of rockets by his space company SpaceX in the south of the State. and the construction of an automobile plant by Tesla near Austin.

By announcing Thursday the installation of his company in Texas, Elon Musk takes a little the opposite direction of several large American companies, which recently openly criticized this state following the adoption of a particularly restrictive law on abortion.

The IT giant Salesforce, for example, offered its help to employees who would like to leave Texas.

But Tesla is also following the lead of Oracle and Hewlett Packard Enterprise, which headed to Texas in 2020.

– Pinned on diversity –

Oracle then explained that this move would be favorable to its growth and would provide “more flexibility to (its) staff on where and how to work”.

Texas has also gone to great lengths in recent years to attract businesses with tax incentives. And the state is known for the absence of income tax, an element a priori favorable to Elon Musk, currently the richest man in the world according to the Bloomberg ranking.

With its listed university and a rich cultural life, Austin has for its part become an attractive place for tech companies.

Speaking on a stage set up in front of the factory under construction on the outskirts of the city, in a black T-shirt with a bandana around the neck, Elon Musk also asserted that business was going well for the group.

Tesla announced at the beginning of October that it had delivered a record number of vehicles in the third quarter, against the tide of a market plagued by the shortage of semiconductors.

The shareholders, however, made a small drawback on Thursday by voting a priori in majority, against the advice of Tesla’s board of directors, for a resolution asking the group to be more transparent about its practices in terms of diversity.

The vote, which has yet to be confirmed by an official tally, comes days after a California jury’s decision to order the company to pay a black ex-employee $ 137 million in damages for turning a blind eye. about the racism suffered by the man in a Tesla factory.

Among other things, the proposal calls for Tesla to provide details on the distribution of employees by gender and ethnicity and for the board to assess the effectiveness of the measures taken by the group in terms of recruitment or promotion.

Source: Challenges en temps réel : accueil by www.challenges.fr.

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