Tesla Motors Inc., the Silicon Valley-based electric car startup, begins selling stock to the public on Tuesday, becoming the first American carmaker to go public since Ford Motor Co. went public in 1956.
Tesla on Monday raised the number of shares it plans to sell to 13.3 million from 11.1 million, a sign that investors are feeling upbeat about its prospects, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Tesla, which will trade on Nasdaq under the symbol “TSLA,” priced its shares late Monday at $17 each, above the target range of $14 to $16. That allowed Tesla to raise more than $226 million in the IPO.
The Obama administration made a $465 million bet on the startup through the ATVM program, while California has approved an approximately $28.8 million tax break for the company through the state’s Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority.
Immediately after the IPO, Tesla plans to sell $50 million in shares to Toyota. The electric-car maker last month agreed to buy Toyota’s Fremont, Calif., manufacturing facility for $42 million to build the Tesla Model S. Tesla’s goal is to build 20,000 Model S sedans a year, which are expected to cost about $50,000 after federal tax credits.
Tesla, whose top-end electric Roadster model sells for more than $100,000, was founded in 2003 by Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk and Chief Technical Officer J.B. Straubel. It has yet to turn a profit.
The automaker has delivered about 1,100 Tesla Roadsters to customers in 22 countries.