RKT Stock – 13 Key Execs and Leaders Controlling Tesla‘s Future
- Tesla has grown from a scrappy startup to the most valuable automaker in the world.
- CEO Elon Musk has always been in charge, but he has a roster of execs who keep the machine running.
- Insider identified the 13 power players at the company who are defining the electric future.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
There’s never been a car company like Tesla.
Founded in 2003, it’s grown from an obscure startup in Silicon Valley to the most successful new American auto brand since Chrysler in the 1930s. It was by far the most valuable car company on the planet as of the second quarter of 2021, with a market capitalization of more than $600 billion — about eight times that of General Motors .
Of course, unlike GM, Ford, Toyota, Volkswagen, and many other established automakers, Tesla sold only about 500,000 vehicles in 2020. That number is growing for Tesla, but Big Auto delivered in a few months what Tesla managed annually.
As governments worldwide move to ban internal-combustion engines and fight the climate crisis, Tesla has the jump on others in the industry that stuck with gas-powered cars as long as they did. Whether that jump will last remains to be seen, as older and more established carmakers — GM, Volkswagen, Ford, Volvo, and others — plan to convert large chunks of their lineups to electric vehicles in the coming years.
Tesla has always endured significant management turnover. CEO Elon Musk has been at the helm for more than a decade, but other execs have come and gone. Most recently, Musk’s longtime right-hand man, JB Straubel, stepped away to focus on a recycling startup. That has helped other leaders snap into focus at the company.
And the company is no longer a small, scrappy startup. It has more than 70,000 employees, including hardcore engineers, software developers, assembly-line workers, test drivers, and salespeople. It can be a challenge to figure out who’s wielding power at Tesla because the company has become more tight-lipped in the past few years — and had maintained for many years a policy of never commenting on internal events, such as hires and departures.
But by paying close attention since 2014, we’ve been able to come up with a list of 13 power players at Tesla who are leading the company into the future. Here they are.