For the first time in its 15 year history, profits for two consecutive quarters were posted by US electric car maker Tesla after it reported fourth quarter results of 2018. The company reported a profit of $139 million against revenues of $7.2 billion for the quarter – the fourth such quarter, according to reports, for the company ever.
The company notched up total revenues of $21.4 billion for the entire 2018 which is a record for the company. However a loss of $1 billion was reported by the company for the entire year.
This performance was unlike the wishes of the company CEO Elon Musk who is still waiting for the company to make profits for a complete year. However the company has of late been able to reduce the losses and at the end of 2018, the company had about $3.7 billion in cash.
The company reported a loss of $2 billion in 2017. This has made Musk and company CFO Deepak Ahuja to describe 2018 to be was the “most pivotal year in Tesla’s history” in a letter.
Ahuja will be leaving the company in a “few” months, Musk announced on a call with analysts. “There is no good time to make this change,”
“It’s a new chapter, a new year. Tesla has had two great quarters of profitability [and] cash flow, it’s on a really solid foundation,” Ahuja said on the call. The chief accounting officer and the head of global finance of the company recently left Tesla.
Earlier in the month, Tesla has announced that it had manufactured about 253,000 cars in 2018 and has managed to deliver about 245,000 of them. The Model 3 – the most affordable of the Tesla models, accounted for just under 140,000 of the total cars delivered. In the fourth quarter of 2018, it delivered 63,359 Model 3s. Musk had once set a target of selling of 500,000 in 2018 and the total number of actual cars sold is lower than that target.
The company however has managed to achieve the kind of production target that Musk has been talking about for quite some time now for its Modeal 3 which the company claims is critical for its success, despite spending billions of dollars in a two year period and a number of production target misses. Tesla also announced its target for 2019 – delivering of cars in the numbers between 360,000 and 400,000 in total which would be an increase of anything between 45 and 65 compared to the figures of 2018.
Musk had also set a target for the company last year of making continuous profits from the third quarter of 2018 and to achieve that , analysts said, Tesla would need ot create a wave of popularity for its Model 3 cars.
(Adapted from TheVerge.com)