A Tesla store in Changzhou, China, in April 2022. Tencent, generally known as certainly one of the world’s largest gaming and social media firms, invested in Tesla in 2017, taking a 5% stake for around $1.78 billion.
Sheldon Cooper | Sopa Images | Lightrocket | Getty Images
Tesla will “keep blowing our minds” with technology even while CEO Elon Musk is distracted with Twitter, in line with the manager to who led an investment from Chinese technology giant Tencent into the U.S. electric carmaker.
Tencent, generally known as certainly one of the world’s largest gaming and social media firms, invested in Tesla in 2017, taking a 5% stake for around $1.78 billion.
“We saw an enormous potential in the corporate, the category of EVs (electric vehicles) but additionally an enormous amount of respect for the way in which Elon was driving the corporate,” David Wallerstein, chief “eXploration” officer (CXO) at Tencent, told CNBC in an interview on Thursday.
As CXO, Wallerstein has the duty of investing in emerging technology for Tencent.
He said that when Tencent made the investment, “it wasn’t so clear that they were going to survive and that EVs were going to truly survive.”
Since then, Tesla has turn into certainly one of the world’s largest electric carmakers. It delivered 1.31 million cars in 2022.
But last yr, Musk purchased Twitter, a move investors saw as a giant distraction for the billionaire at a time when Tesla needed a gentle hand. Tesla stock is down about 62% over the past yr.
Wallerstein said that despite the distraction, he remains to be has confidence in Tesla.
“Actually, if a frontrunner is get distracted across many corporations it’s hard to focus and Elon has a whole lot of projects. I believe they’re still doing great work,” Wallerstein said.
He added that there is more likely to be several competitors but that may “be really good for the planet” as electric automotive sales rise.
“I’d count on them [Tesla] to maintain blowing our minds with what they do with technology,” Wallerstein said.
Tencent is a prolific investor in many various industries, starting from gaming to e-commerce. But the corporate recently sold a few of its stake amid a stricter regulatory environment in China.
But Wallerstein is on the hunt for investments in next-generation areas that would aid the fight against global challenges like climate change. Tencent has invested in corporations resembling Chinese electric vehicle Nio and German “flying” automotive company Lilium.