Just days after reporting its biggest quarterly cash burn in history, Tesla announced on Monday it plans to raise about $1.5 billion in new cash, although in a welcome change for equity investors, this time it decided against an equity or convertible sale, and will offer bonds instead to take advantage of the insatiable bond market, as the carmarker seeks to ramp up production of its latest Model 3 electric vehicle. Tesla had over $3 billion in cash on hand at the end of the June quarter, compared with $4 billion at the end of the previous quarter and $3.25 billion a year earlier.
The debt offering comes as Tesla has reportedly received thousands of advance reservations for the Model 3, which Elon Musk said were averaging at about 1,800 per day since the car's launch in late July. Tesla counts on the Model 3, its least pricey car, to become a profitable, mass market electric car maker although it may have difficulties in a market that is becoming increasingly competitive.
At the launch event, Musk said the company would face "at least six months of manufacturing hell" as it increases production of the Model 3, which has a $35,000 base price.
Tesla's cash burn, expected to top $2 billion this year, hit a record $1.16 billion in the second quarter...
... and prompted short-sellers like David Einhorn to add bets against the Palo Alto, California company, which remains the most crowded global short name.