Tesla CEO Elon Musk is expected to take the stage Tuesday afternoon for the company’s annual shareholder meeting, just days after announcing that he had chosen NBCU leader Linda Yaccarino as the next CEO of Twitter — another company that he owns.
Tesla shareholders previously raised concerns that Musk’s ownership of Twitter, which became official in October 2022, would be a distraction. This new appointment could assuage shareholders who want Musk more deeply involved at Tesla.
If the past is a guide, Tesla’s shareholder event will be run like an informal town hall meeting with Musk and possibly a few top lieutenant’s fielding questions from the crowd of shareholders.
Previous Tesla annual shareholder meetings have been loaded with announcements and updates as well as some general ruminating and forecasting from Musk. Expect questions and hopefully answers about the Tesla Cybertruck, battery cells, future and existing factories and maybe even solar and energy storage. And what ever happened to the Roadster? The question of leadership — and more specifically, succession — may come up as well.
There will also be the requisite corporate governance duties to complete, including electing new board members. Tesla’s eight-person board includes Musk, his brother Kimbal Musk, Ira Ehrenpreis, chair Robyn Denholm, Hiromichi Mizuno, Joe Gebbia, James Murdoch and Kathleen Wilson-Thompson.
Shareholders must elect three directors to serve for a three-year term. Tesla has nominated Musk, Denholm and JB Straubel, the company’s former CTO who is now running his own startup, Redwood Materials. If elected by shareholders (which is almost a certainty), Straubel would take over the spot vacated by Mizuno, the former chief investment officer of Japan’s $1.5 trillion pension fund. Mizuno joined the board and its audit committee in 2020 and will not stand for re-election.
Other items on the agenda include proposals from Tesla to approve executive compensation on a non-binding advisory basis, the frequency of future votes on executive compensation on a non-binding advisory basis to every three years and the appointment of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP as Tesla’s independent registered public accounting firm for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2023.
A stockholder proposal was submitted that, if approved, would require the board to oversee the preparation and maintenance of a publicly disclosed report on Tesla’s Key-Person Risk, including identification of key persons and actions to ameliorate the impacts of their potential loss. Tesla has recommended voting against that measure.
Tesla’s shareholder meeting is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. PT Tuesday and will be livestreamed. A limited number of shareholders will be invited to attend the meeting, which will be held at Tesla’s Gigafactory Texas near Austin. For those who want to tune in, Tesla will stream the event via its company website and YouTube. It will likely be broadcast via its Twitter page as well.