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Telstra executive Robyn Denholm quits to be Tesla chairman

09 November, 2018, 04:48 | Author: Shawna Walton
  • Robyn Denholm has been an independent director at Tesla since 2014

Tesla Inc director Robyn Denholm, a telecoms executive who has worked for Toyota, has been promoted to chairwoman of the electric auto company and tasked with regulating billionaire Elon Musk's regime after months of turbulence.

Denholm is now the Chair of Tesla's Audit Committee a role she will step away from until her initial 6 month notice period is complete.

Denholm has been on the board of Tesla since 2014, and has been the head of the company's audit committee. She worked at Toyota Australia for seven years and did stints at Juniper Networks and Sun Microsystems.

'I believe in this company, I believe in its mission and I look forward to helping Elon and the Tesla team achieve sustainable profitability and drive long-term shareholder value, ' said Denholm in a statement. Tesla says Denholm will continue to work with Telstra during this period as well.

She is now just one of two women on the board of Tesla. Telstra is the largest telecommunications company in Australia.

As part of Musk's settlement with the SEC, Tesla also is supposed to monitor Twitter posts that he makes if they have to do with company news.

Email messages sent to Denholm Thursday were not immediately returned. Since it went public in 2010, Tesla has posted a profit in only two quarters: once in 2013 and again in 2016.

The company had until next week to name the new chairman.

The charismatic, visionary Musk has strived to turn Tesla into a profitable, mass-market producer of environmentally-friendly electric cars. And the SEC is still a factor - Tesla received a subpoena last week from the SEC concerning Model 3 production forecasts in 2017, according to The Verge.

"I think this is the best possible outcome for everyone involved", said Ivan Feinseth of Tigress Financial Partners, who rates Tesla "neutral", who added the SEC's penalty was only a slap on the wrist for Musk.

Musk, who remains Tesla's biggest shareholder and the driving force behind its ambitious plans to reshape electric battery technology and vehicle transport, tweeted https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1060452014642016256 his approval of the appointment.

Tesla has endured a hard few months, following comments on social media in early August made by the firm's founder, Elon Musk, suggesting he had "funding secured" for a deal to take Tesla private.

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