Elon Musk pits an army of Tesla fans against Wall Street analysts, short sellers – Los Angeles Times

Elon Musk pits an army of Tesla fans against Wall Street analysts, short sellers – Los Angeles Times

Elon Musk
On Feb. 2, the day before Tesla’s stock would rocket to a new high, Chief Executive Elon Musk announced an event at his house for computer programmers on Twitter and invited Vivien Hantusch, a student in Germany, to attend.Hantusch, who studies product design, will sell a single share in Tesla to buy her flight from Düsseldorf to California to take part, she said. Musk frequently responds to her tweets, but “he hasn’t told us anything yet” about the event.Hantusch is part of a global Tesla fan base who own the electric car maker’s stock and champion the views of Musk online.
They also fight back against Tesla detractors, such as the short sellers who have sparred online with Musk for years and bet that Tesla’s shares will fall.“It was the first stock I ever invested in — with Tesla, I felt I had to support the company, especially [given] the short sellers, ” said Hantusch, who bought the shares in 2018. “I don’t do this to get a profit or a job, I do this because I love the company.”Advertisement In November Hantusch and a group of Tesla fans launched Third Row, a podcast focused on the company. Last month ....


Musk brought his dog, Marvin the Martian, and his mother Maye Musk, the fashion model, who also brought her dog.“The dogs were running around and Marvin the Martian was sitting on my lap, ” said Sofiaan Fraval, a software engineer in Santa Barbara, who produces the podcast and also owns a Tesla and stock in the company. “That was so cool.”Tesla’s online fan base has spawned podcasts, dedicated channels on YouTube and an incessant stream of social media posts that frame the company as an agent of change at the crossroads of technology and the environment, not simply a carmaker struggling to turn a profit.
Advertisement In nurturing this group of supporters with daily tweets and face-to-face meetups, Musk has struck a chord with his customers and retail shareholders. In the process, he has built an arsenal of defenders who amplify his views online and take up arms against critics.Last month Tesla announced a $105-million fourth-quarter profit that set the share price alight. On Feb. .

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