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Elon Musk speaks onstage during The New York Times Dealbook Summit 2023.

Elon Musk speaks onstage during The New York Times Dealbook Summit 2023.
Image: Slaven Vlasic (Getty Images)

Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and self-described Chief Troll Officer of X (formerly known as Twitter), has said he’d like more control over his electric vehicle business — 25% to be exact.

“I am uncomfortable growing Tesla to be a leader in AI & robotics without having ~25% voting control,” he said Monday on X. “Enough to be influential, but not so much that I can’t be overturned. Unless that is the case, I would prefer to build products outside of Tesla.”

The newfound desire for more control over Tesla is a reversal from the executive’s move in 2022 to sell off 22 million shares of the company in order to raise cash for his acquisition of Twitter — a decision that reduced his stake in the company from 17% to about 13%.

Now Musk wants to up his stake in the EV business as it expands into AI and robotics. The company said in July 2023 that it was investing up to $1 billion in Project Dojo, a supercomputer with machine learning capabilities. Meanwhile, Optimus, the humanoid made through Tesla’s robotics division, was unveiled in 2022.

A bigger stake in Tesla would mean Musk would get a bigger payout from the company just as it’s facing a lawsuit arguing that the CEO’s pay package — 40,000 times the median Tesla salary — is unfairly high.

Tesla stock was up 0.25% to $219.44 in midday trading Tuesday, after a brutal day to close last week saw it lose $36 billion in market value. The company has lost almost $100 billion in market capitalization so far this year.

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