Musk proceeding with Twitter deal “feels like a classic distraction tactic” – reaction from Mirabaud Equity Research

by | Oct 5, 2022

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Neil Campling, head of TMT research at Mirabaud Equity Research, said:

“Elon Musk is to proceed with his Twitter deal. The simple conclusion may be that this reflects the weakness of Musk’s legal arguments in the case (Twitter vs. Musk, et al. (C.A. No. 202-0613-KSJM), and there was the representation sent on 3rd October to adjourn the trial and all other proceedings related thereto pending such closing or further order of the court.

That is the “simple conclusion”, but when has Elon Musk ever done “simple”? The answer is never. What other factors could be at play? Well, this happens to come just after Tesla reported woeful delivery numbers for Q3 (which was announced on Sunday, just as the markets were “sleeping” – an old tactic of burying bad news, perhaps? The Twitter news does feel like a classic Musk distraction tactic. Tesla happened to blame cars being “in transit”, which is somewhat surprising given logistic costs have collapsed on main shipping routes and lanes have opened up for deliveries. Perhaps, dare we suggest, it is more to do with the fact that consumers’ appetite for the Model Y has become “Y-Bother”? After all, the only other Tesla model shipping in volume is Model 3, which is now six years old.

Supply chain constraints are easing. The AI and innovation days are lacking in innovation, the new product announcements are now automatically discounted in expectation of reality (any sign of those 100m Robotaxis? The Cybertruck? The Roadster?) You can add Optimus, the barely working robot to the list, which is going to get dubbed the “OptiMusk”. There is nothing wrong with being a visionary, but occasionally being grounded in reality rather than hubris might be a path to better planning. While Tesla SHOULD be ticking the box for ESG investors in the trailblazing, early move advantage of EVs, the risk is that Musk will be the undoing of ESG fund backing because of the lack of ‘G’ in the ESG.”


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