Following a note to his investors alleging that Elon Musk continues to commit fraud, prominent TSLA short and hedge fund manager David Einhorn has received a response from the Tesla CEO. Musk’s letter, which he shared on Twitter, appears to be a snarky olive branch that offers Einhorn an opportunity to change his mind about the electric car maker.
Einhorn’s Greenlight Capital, which declined by 34% last year partly due to his bet against Tesla, lost its bet against the electric car maker once more in the third quarter. In a letter to his firm’s investors, Einhorn admitted that TSLA was one of its “material losers” of Q3’19 while accusing Elon Musk of “knowingly” orchestrating “significant fraud” with Tesla’s SolarCity buyout in 2016. The TSLA short also accused the electric car maker of failing to warn customers about its burning solar panels and its car battery fires.
Musk, who appears to be adopting a rather confident stance, shared a letter to the hedge fund manager on Twitter. Playfully calling Einhorn by the German translation of his name and dubbing himself as “Treelon Musk,” the Tesla CEO extended a rather snarky olive branch to the short seller. In his letter, Musk invited Einhorn to meet with him and see Tesla’s work firsthand, something that would be wise for the sake of Greenlight Capital’s investors.
November 8, 2019
Following is Musk’s letter in full.
Dear Mr. Unicorn (fabulous name btw),
We read your Greenlight Capital Q3’19 Investor Letter, in which you make numerous false allegations against Tesla. It is understandable that you wish to save face with your investors, given the losses you suffered from Tesla’s successful third quarter, especially since you’ve had several down years in performance and a sharp drop in assets under management from $15 billion to $5 billion. You have our sympathies.
We also recognize your desire to feel somehow relevant with your Tesla short position at a time when your friends in the Tesla short community have been noticeably recoiling from the public discourse, as the world is increasingly recognizing Tesla’s contributions to science, safety and a sustainable environment.
To the extent that you have any desire to learn about the amazing progress the people of Tesla are making, I would like to extend an open invitation to meet with me to discuss Tesla and tour our facilities. For their sake, I’m certain your investors would appreciate you getting smart on Tesla.
Finally, please allow us to send you a gift of short shorts to help you through this difficult time.
Musk’s reference to Einhorn and a box of short shorts is based on a series of amusing events last year which began with Einhorn stating that he is not renewing the lease on his Tesla Model S due to tech issues with the car. Responding on Twitter, Musk stated that Tesla will “send Einhorn a box of short shorts to comfort him through this difficult time.” Following Elon Musk’s tweet, apparel maker Chubbies opted to send the hedge fund manager a literal box of shorts, most of which featured a very short 5.5-inch inseam.
on it fam. pic.twitter.com/KuiyscNu0e— Chubbies (@Chubbies) August 1, 2018
Sure enough, Einhorn received his shorts, and he promptly took to Twitter to thank the Tesla CEO for being a “man of his word.” Musk responded by playfully asking Einhorn to put them on and post a selfie, but the TSLA short-seller did not comply. Perhaps this year, things will be different, or maybe Chubbies would be up for the task once more, considering that Kyle Hency, one of the company’s founders, stated that they could keep sending short shorts to TSLA shorts if Elon Musk wishes.
Put them on & post a selfie— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 11, 2018
While Einhorn is a Tesla short and he continues to accuse Musk of fraud, among others, he appears to be a bit more level-headed compared to some of the angry, vapid TSLA retail and institutional short-sellers that populate Twitter. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why Musk actually opted to invite Einhorn in what seems to be an attempt to change the hedge fund manager’s mind. Elon Musk’s letter might be rife with snark, but it may, if Einhorn opts to respond, save his fund from more painful losses in the near future.