Alleged supplier bankruptcies renew suspicion that Tesla isn't paying up
- A known short-seller Fahmi Qadir, who has been betting against Tesla of late, said on Bloomberg TV Friday that she suspects Tesla suppliers are getting stiffed again after "some supplier bankruptcies." Qadir did not elaborate or name names.
- Whether or not lack of payment by Tesla is driving suppliers to bankruptcy, Qadir said the unspecified bankruptcies leave Tesla in a compromised position because many of its parts come from only one source.
- "A lot of Tesla’s supply chain is actually single-source and we question the ability of Tesla to actually deliver on their promises to their customers when they're on the brink of a massive supply chain disruption," said Qadir.
In recent months, much of what Qadir mentioned has been either rumored to be true or confirmed by Tesla CEO Elon Musk himself.
Tesla reportedly asked suppliers to return some of the cash they had been paid in July. At the time CEO Elon Musk said the suppliers were not getting paid because the parts they supplied were incorrect.
In August a survey conducted by Original Equipment Suppliers Association, an automotive supplier organization, found Tesla's suppliers are increasingly concerned they will not get paid. In September, Musk tweeted that he was in "delivery logistics hell," struggling to get finished cars to their new owners. This prompted Musk to launch an initiative to manufacture roll-on, roll-off cargo trucks.
All of these stories, plus some supply chain executive exits, caused Qadir to make a public bet against the company.
"We see very little contingency planning and we also see executives from the supply chain department departing," said Qadir.
Bloomberg recently reported that Liam O’Connor, who was vice president of global supply management for Tesla, left the company last month.
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