On Saturday morning, Tesla Motors Chairman Elon Musk delivered a keynote address to the TIeCon conference in Santa Clara, CA and then sat down to talk about the plans for funding the future operations of Tesla. We've previously heard from both Musk and Marketing VP Darryl Siry about some of the plans, but Musk gave some clarification to the timing. First up for Tesla is a Series E round of venture capital that will sell off about 10 percent of the company. Following that is a Department of Energy loan guarantee program. The company will likely borrow between $100 and $200 million through the DOE program. Following that, Musk wants to launch an initial public offering by the end of the year.

One interesting element of the plans is the possibility of letting early Tesla customers take a piece of the that Series E funding round. That possibility first came up during a Tesla Town Hall meeting for customers last December. At that time, at least one customer asked about the possibility of investing in the meeting and Musk replied that he would like to see it happen. During Saturday's conference, Musk indicated that there are some legal issues that needed to be addressed, but the company was working on making it happen. Perhaps the new presence of Larry Sonsini on the Tesla board will help. The cash will from all this fund raising will be used for the development and production of the WhiteStar sedan hopefully by 2010.

[Source: News.com, thanks to Doug for the tip]


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