- The announcement
Tesla CEO Elon Musk shocked observers when he said on August 7 that he was thinking about taking the company private.
That plan came to an abrupt conclusion on August 24, when Musk and Tesla formally abandoned the idea, having whipped up a whirlwind that got the attention of everyone, including Wall Street regulators.
Here's what you need to know to make sense of the saga:
November 15, 2017: Elon Musk says in a Rolling Stone interview that he wishes Tesla was a private company.
July 31, 2018: Musk claims he met with the managing director of Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund.
Musk claimed in a statement published on Tesla's website on Monday that he had a meeting with the managing director of Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund on July 31.
During this meeting, Musk claimed the director
The Saudi sovereign fund did not respond to a request for comment.
August 1, 2018: Tesla reports second-quarter earnings amid fear the company is running out of cash.
During the company's earnings call, Musk apologized to
August 2, 2018: Musk claims he told Tesla's board he wanted to take the company private at $420 per share.
In his August 13 statement, Musk said that after first telling the board about his desire to take Tesla private, the board's outside directors met without him. Musk said he later met with them again to talk about the discussions he'd had about financing a go-private deal.
August 6, 2018: The British diver Musk called a 'pedo' prepares to sue him for libel.
August 7, 2018: Elon Musk sends "funding secured" tweet.
August 7, 2018: Stock jumps as high as 12%, closing at $379.57.
August 8, 2018: Tesla's board posts a brief statement about Musk's desire to take Tesla private.
Tesla board members said in a statement on August 8 that Musk had begun a discussion with them about going private the week prior. They said they had met multiple times since.
August 8, 2018: SEC reportedly makes inquiries into Tesla regarding Elon Musk's "funding secured" tweet.
According to the publication, the SEC was also looking into why Musk's first statement about the potential of taking Tesla private was made on Twitter instead of in a regulatory filing. The agency also asked the company whether it believed Musk's tweet followed SEC rules about protecting investors, The Journal reported.
August 9, 2018: News breaks of the board reportedly asking Musk to recuse himself as it explores the possibility of going private.
CNBC reported that
August 10, 2018: Reports emerge that Tesla is in early discussions about funding to go private.
On August 10, Tesla
August 10, 2018: Two lawsuits filed against Musk and Tesla allege securities fraud.
Two Tesla investors filed separate lawsuits accusing Musk of misleading investors and manipulating the company's stock price with his statements about taking the company private.
August 13, 2018: On Monday morning, Musk reveals new details about why he sent "funding secured" tweet.
August 13, 2018: Azealia Banks says she was at Musk's house during the prior weekend and that he was "scrounging for investors."
Banks told Business Insider that Musk seemed concerned about getting financing for a potential go-private deal while she was at one of his homes in Los Angeles.
A representative for Musk said he had never met or communicated with Banks, but did not deny that Banks had stayed at one of his homes during the time period Banks specified.
Tesla declined a request for comment on Banks' claims regarding Musk's efforts to find investors.
August 13, 2018: Musk tweets in the evening that he is working with Goldman Sachs and Silver Lake as financial advisors on a proposal to take Take private.
August 13, 2018: The New York Times reports that some members of the board were blindsided by his 'funding secured' tweet.
August 13, 2018: Tesla hit with another securities fraud lawsuit.
August 14, 2018: Tesla board forms a special committee to review a plan to take Tesla private.
August 14, 2018: A fourth lawsuit is filed against Tesla.
Jalopnik reported on Wednesday that a fourth lawsuit had been filed against Tesla, alleging securities fraud.
According to the US District Court in California's website, the lawsuit was filed on Tuesday.
August 15, 2018: SEC reportedly subpoenas Tesla.
August 15, 2018: Goldman Sachs officially signs on to advise Musk on his plans to take Tesla private.
Goldman Sachs said it would be "acting as a financial advisor in connection with a matter that is fundamental to the reasonable analysis of the rating and price target for the stock."
The firm also said it was suspending research coverage of Tesla.
August 16, 2018: The Wall Street Journal reports that the SEC is investigating whether Musk was trying to hurt short sellers with his "funding secured" tweet.
The Wall Street Journal reported the Securities and Exchange Commission was investigating whether Tesla CEO Elon Musk was attempting to hurt the company's short-sellers when he tweeted about taking the company private.
According to the report, the agency was asking Tesla's board of directors what Musk told them before he tweeted that he had secured the funding to convert Tesla into a private company, were the proposal to pass a shareholder vote.
August 16, 2018: The New York Times publishes a revealing Elon Musk interview. He told the Times he does not regret his "funding secured" tweet and said that he planned to stay on as CEO of the company.
And despite the fact that Musk's "funding secured" tweet could end up costing both him and the company, he said he did not regret it.
August 17, 2018: Tesla short-sellers reportedly make around $1 billion.
Following Musk's New York Times interview, Tesla's share price dropped almost 9% when trading closed on August 17, and it fell nearly 1% more during after-hours trading. Tesla short-sellers made around $1 billion that day, The Times reported, citing data from the analytics firm S3 partners.
August 19, 2018: Musk defends his work habits.
In response to Musk's comments to The New York Times about working up to 120 hours per week, Arianna Huffington wrote that Musk's work habits were unhealthy and unproductive in a post on Thrive Global that was published on August 17.
August 21, 2018: Morgan Stanley halts coverage of Tesla.
Morgan Stanley halted its research coverage of Tesla on August 21, a move that indicates it may be working with Tesla in some capacity as the company explores the possibility of going private. Last week, Goldman Sachs stopped covering Tesla, saying it was "
August 24, 2018: Elon Musk announces Tesla will remain a public company.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced August 24 that Tesla will remain a public company.
This concludes what had been weeks of speculation and hand-wringing around the go-private proposal Musk first revealed in a tweet on August 7.
In a blog post published on Tesla's website, Musk said discussions with existing shareholders and financial advisors revealed there was little appetite for such a move.
"After considering all of these factors, I met with Tesla’s Board of Directors yesterday and let them know that I believe the better path is for Tesla to remain public. The Board indicated that they agree," Musk wrote.
August 27, 2018: The Wall Street Journal reports that Volkswagen wanted to invest in a private Tesla.
Tesla declined Business Insider's request for comment and Volkswagen did not respond to a request for comment.
According to The Journal, Musk had reservations about letting rival automakers invest in Tesla, thinking they would be attempting to benefit from what he reportedly called the "Tesla halo."
The Journal also reported that the potential new investors in a deal to take Tesla private would want a significant amount of influence over the company, though the publication did not specify whether Volkswagen specifically requested those or similar terms.
August 28, 2018: Musk and The New York Times disagree over whether Musk cried during his interview.
On August 28, Musk said on Twitter that while his voice cracked during the interview, he didn't cry.
"For the record, my voice cracked once during the NY Times article. That's it. There were no tears," hesaid.
In the first story, Musk is described as having "choked up multiple times" during the interview. That interview took place over the phone, according to a follow-up story.
A New York Times spokesperson said the publication stands by its description of Musk in the first story.
"Mr. Musk's emotion was audible. It is not true that his voice only cracked once," the spokesperson said.
August 31, 2018: Musk says he was thinking like a casino owner when he sent his "funding secured" tweet.
September 5, 2018: Musk reportedly hires a lawyer who used to work for the SEC.
September 6, 2018: Notorious short-seller Andrew Left sues Musk and Tesla.
Citron Research founder and Tesla short-seller Andrew Left filed a lawsuit against Musk and Tesla on Thursday, alleging that Musk sent his "funding secured" tweet to harm short-sellers like him.
The filing called Musk's statements about potentially taking Tesla private "an ill-conceived attempt to artificially manipulate the price of Tesla securities in order to 'burn' and 'squeeze out' the Company's short-sellers."