Tesla started 2018 with a record quarter in several ways. The company generated $ 3.4 billion in revenue, which is more than ever. Tesla also consumed more money than ever, converting that income figure to a loss of almost $ 785 million. Established a new high company for automobiles manufactured in the first quarter of the year, including model 3, of critical importance, which the company is producing at a rate of around 2,200 per week, still below the most recent objectives of the CEO Elon Musk.
The financial director of Musk and Tesla, Deepak Ahuja, claims in a quarterly letter to investors that it was announced today that the company will return to the green in the second half of this year, and that it will do so without having to perform additional investments. Meanwhile, the company has reduced to $ 2.7 billion in cash, after starting the year with $ 3.4 billion. Such are the ups and downs that accompany the company that is trying to make an elegant but practical electric car for the masses while doing many, many other things at the same time.
Tesla says that the total number of Model 3 reserves remains above 450,000, which could mean two things. Or there is no that many people cancel their advance orders after the delay now of "six to nine months" for deliveries. Or, Tesla is attracting enough new orders to keep the number hovering around half a million.
Whatever the answer, Tesla's biggest focus in the second quarter of the year continues to increase the number of models 3 that the company can manufacture per week. That's because, at this time, the company keeps losing money on each one that it sends. While it points to a gross margin of 25 percent in Model 3, Tesla will not reach a break-even point in each car sold until at least mid-year when it reaches the production mark of 5,000 to 6,000 per week, the company said. in the quarterly report letter released to investors today.
A recently leaked email from Musk to his employees described some of the durations that Musk is willing to push the company to get to that point. In the coming weeks, Tesla will add another shift and push production throughout the day to make 6,000 models 3 per week at the midpoint of 2018.
Still, Musk and Ahuja said in today's letter that more closures of production will be required to achieve that goal. These multi-day delays allow the company to address "small and known limitations" that increase long-term performance, they say.
Tesla has always promoted plans to use robots to build Model 3 (and its other cars) at ever higher volumes, but Musk recently withdrew some of those statements in an interview with CBS This Morning where he said that the company could also have been depending on the automation. That said, in today's investor letter, Musk and Ahuja spoke again about automation. "In the end, it's about having factories that produce the highest quality cars in the world as quickly and cost-effectively as possible, and with injuries as low as possible," they wrote. "Our automation strategy is key to this and we are as committed to it as ever."
As Tesla works 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to increase production of Model 3, the company is also starting to see the arrival of money from its other efforts, namely, its business solar and energy storage. Tesla almost doubled the amount of revenue from energy storage last year, and experienced an increase of 38 percent over the last quarter. With $ 410 million, it is still far from the nearly $ 3 billion that the company generates per quarter in its automotive business. But it has become a buffer for Tesla, even before the company has shipped a significant amount of its new solar roofs.