Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Tesla IPO

Carmaker's stock defies weakness in the broad market
* Tesla now has $2.22 billion market cap
* CEO Elon Musk's stake worth more than $650 mln
* Tesla first carmaker to have IPO since Ford's 1956 debut
* Tesla not expecting profits until at least 2012 (Updates share prices, adds details on shareholders, comparison with other auto deals, other background)
NEW YORK/SAN FRANCISCO, June 29 (Reuters) - Electric carmaker Tesla Motors Corp's (TSLA.O) initial public offering zoomed ahead on Tuesday with shares rallying more than 40 percent as investors bet that electric cars would define the future of transportation.
Tesla's shining debut came despite weakness in the broad market and as other auto stocks were hit by concerns of a global slowdown. Tesla was the top gainer on the Nasdaq on Tuesday, offering hope to other companies mulling initial public offerings but which may have shied away given recent volatility.
Tesla's closing share price of $23.89 boosted its market capitalization to $2.22 billion, compared with $1.6 billion on Monday night. It is the first initial public offering by an American automaker since Ford's debut in 1956. The debut comes amid heightened interest in electric cars and as major automakers gear up to launch various types of battery-powered vehicles, including plug-in hybrids.
"They're competing against both internal combustion engines and alternative fuels like fuel cells, compressed natural gas and things like that," said Matt Therian, an analyst with Connecticut-based IPO research house Renaissance Capital. "It's probably too early to say that electric vehicles are definitely going to be the next thing in cars, but if they are I think the potential is huge."

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