Tesla Motors Rides All-Time High, Offers More Stock, New Debt

Tesla Model S
Tesla Model S

Electric carmaker Tesla Motors Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) is issuing up to 3.9 million new shares at a non-discounted share price of $92.24, striking while the iron is hot and investors are still bedazzled by the company's first-quarter profit. Tesla is also offering a convertible note to raise about $589 million. Taken together, the two offerings are expected to add $968 million to the company's coffers. The underwriters' option, if exercised, would bring the total to $1.075 billion.

Tesla plans to use part of the proceeds to accelerate repayment of a $452.4 million loan from the federal government. The loan, made under the Department of Energy's Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing program, was made in 2009 and had an original repayment period of 10 years. Tesla had said earlier that it would pay off the loan in five years.

Tesla's chairman and CEO Elon Musk will purchase up to 1.08 million shares of the new offering. Musk is also the chairman of SolarCity Corp. (NASDAQ: SCTY).

Opinion appears to be pretty evenly divided between those who believe that Tesla will continue to grow and those who believe that the company is really just another disaster waiting to happen. The company plans to reach production of 500 Model S sedans a week this year, a number that would barely dent the 15.5 million new cars expected to be sold in the United States this year. Naysayers see that as a precursor of doom. True believers expect Tesla to introduce an all-electric car that sells for half the price of the Model S within a few years, which would allow the company to cast a wider net for customers.

In the premarket this morning, Tesla's shares are up about 2.5%, at $94.54 in a 52-week range of $25.52 to $97.12.

Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Alternative Energy, Autos, Green Biz, Secondary Offering Tagged: featured, SCTY, TSLA