Tesla is surging after naming Larry Ellison and one other independent director to its board

  • Tesla announced Friday that it has named Oracle founder Larry Ellison and Kathleen Wilson-Thompson, human recourses global chief of Walgreens Boots Alliance, as independent directors.
  • The announcement fulfills a requirement from Tesla's settlement with the SEC.
  • CEO Elon Musk recently stepped down as chairman as part of the settlement.
  • Watch Tesla trade live.

Tesla was surging early Friday, up as much as 4.28% to $329.67 a share, after the company named two independent directors to its board.

The electric-car maker announced that Oracle founder Larry Ellison and Kathleen Wilson-Thompson, human resources global chief of Walgreens Boots Alliance just joined its board independent directors.

Ellison has been a passionate defender of Tesla CEO Elon Musk, and purchased 3 million shares of Tesla earlier this year, his second-largest personal investment, according to a previous disclosure

Tesla said it conducted a "thorough, expansive" search for candidates with various skills sets and who had a strong personal belief in Tesla's mission of accelerating the world's transition to sustainable energy. 

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“In conducting a widespread search over the last few months, we sought to add independent directors with skills that would complement the current board ’s experience," Tesla said in a press release.

"In Larry and Kathleen, we have added a preeminent entrepreneur and a human resources leader, both of whom have a passion for sustainable energy."

The innovative auto company has weathered a rocky few months in the wake of Musk's tweets in August that he had "funding secured" for a deal to take Tesla private at $420 a share.

Musk and Tesla settled with the US Securities and Exchange Commission in September after the regulator sued Tesla for fraud. Tesla and Musk agreed to pay a fine of $20 million each and for Musk stepped down as company's chairman for at least the next three years. He was replaced by Robyn Denholm, previous CFO at Australian telecoms operator Telstra.

Tesla was up 3% this year through Thursday. 

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