Tesla burns $739.5 million in cash on way to record 2Q loss

Kenny Grant
August 2, 2018

The company said it lost $4.22 per share as revenue grew 43pc.

Wall Street analysts have also questioned whether Tesla would need to raise more cash, but Musk said on the call that he expected the company to be henceforth profitable and cash flow positive, excluding some debt repayment, and had no plans for an equity raise. Analysts were projecting Tesla would go through about US$900 million during the period, after burning more than US$1 billion in three of the previous four quarters.

The net loss more than doubled from the same quarter a year ago, and was slightly larger than the first quarter.

Tesla spent millions as it reached a goal of producing 5,000 Model 3 sedans per week by the end of June. "One example is TSLA's reiterating a Model 3 production rate goal of 6,000 units per week by late August, with a more vague time frame to reach production of 10,000 units per week".

In its eight years as a public company Tesla has turned a profit in only two quarters. Honestly, I really think there's no excuse for bad manners, and I was kind of violating my own rule in that regard.

Tesla projected 2018 capital spending of slightly less than $2.5 billion, compared to $3.4 billion a year ago. "The popularity of Model 3 is a true testament to the product".

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"Due to the density of the line and the relatively high downtime of the lifters, ramping [main general assembly line] GA3 became substantially more complicated than we had anticipated", the company noted.

Building 55,000 vehicles in the third quarter works out to an average weekly rate of 4,230 Model 3s.

Back then, Musk derided analysts for asking about capital needs, dismissing their queries by calling them "boring, boneheaded questions" and then taking a series of more sympathetic questions from a small shareholder who was well-informed about Tesla and bullish on its future.

The company said it produced 53,339 vehicles in the second quarter and delivered 18,449 Model 3s.

During the second quarter, Tesla laid off 9 percent of its workforce as it worked toward Musk's promise of making money. Its shares surged after the close of regular trading. While construction is expected to start in the next few quarters, Tesla's investment won't begin "in any significant way" until next year, according to the shareholder letter. Automotive gross margin increased to 20.6% GAAP up from 19.7% in the previous quarter which means Tesla makes more money from every auto it sells than it did before.

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