Tesla granted billionaire founder Elon Musk a $2.6 billion stock options. This is the largest option grant of its kind. If fully vested over a decade, the stock options would net Elon as much as $55.8 billion. Along the way, nothing would be guaranteed — zero salary or cash bonuses.
Elon Musk’s 2012 grant was linked to development and production of electric cars. The new package of 20.3 million options is tied solely to financials — raising Tesla’s market value to $650 billion, roughly in line with Amazon and boosting either revenue or adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization. The grant vests in 12 increments if both market value hurdles and either one of the financial goals are met. The grant will require shareholder approval at a meeting in March.
While Tesla has struggled with manufacturing issues that have raised questions about its ability to mass-produce cars, the company has met the production target of 300,000 vehicles outlined in Musk’s 2012 grant. The one remaining milestone for the 2012 options is a gross margin of 30 percent for four consecutive quarters. Tesla’s margin has averaged about 21 percent during the last four quarters, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
If the award fully vests, Musk would own a 28 percent stake in the company worth about $184 billion. Elon already owns a large part of Tesla.