Elon Musk on Tuesday said that Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook refused to take up a meeting in 2017, to discuss acquiring Tesla Inc. In a tweet, Musk said that he approached Apple during Tesla’s darkest days to discuss a possible deal.
During the darkest days of the Model 3 program, I reached out to Tim Cook to discuss the possibility of Apple acquiring Tesla (for 1/10 of our current value). He refused to take the meeting.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 22, 2020
This comes while Tesla was developing its Model 3. Musk had planned to sell Tesla for one-tenth of its current value, indicating a valuation of about $60 billion.
The American electric vehicle and clean energy company burned cash as it ramped up output of its mass-market Model 3 electric vehicle, in 2017. Then, the company told its employee about the “production hell” it faced for six months or longer, at the company’s Fremont, California.
Weeks after this, Musk in a tweet expressed his appreciation on the hard work put in by the Tesla Gigafactory team and also mentioning that he slept on the roof of a factory trying to resolve the bottlenecks.
“Btw, just want to express a word of appreciation for the hard work of the Tesla Gigafactory team. Reason I camped on the roof was because it was less time than driving to a hotel room in Reno. Production hell, ~8th circle …” the tweet read.
Btw, just want to express a word of appreciation for the hard work of the Tesla Gigafactory team. Reason I camped on the roof was because it was less time than driving to a hotel room in Reno. Production hell, ~8th circle …
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 26, 2017
All this was happening around the same time when Apple Apple decided to shift from development of a full-fledged Tesla competitor to an underlying self-driving car system. However, in recent years, Apple has hired quite a several ex-Tesla executives who specialize in the drive train, car interior and self-driving technology. Along with that Apple has also acquired companies that specialize in self-driving car development. This indicates that the company is considering again entering the market.
Elon Musk’s comment about Apple Inc. comes after a day Tesla joined Apple in the benchmark S&P 500 Index, capping a year in which its stock has surged. As the company has posted five consecutive quarters of profit, the investors have bid up the shares.
The shares of Tesla are up by about 800% since Musk in 2018 tweeted that he had “funding secured” to take the company private. And as a consequence, Musk had agreed to pay $20 million to settle with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission but he still faced an investor lawsuit.
This week Apple’s stock saw a climb, while Tesla’s stock saw a downfall after a Reuters report claimed Apple is aiming to produce a driverless car for consumers in 2024.