Tesla is asking its shareholders to approve a three-way stock split to help make the company’s shares cheaper for buyers.
The request is included in a list of provisions Tesla is planning to bring up at its August 4, 2022 shareholder meeting, which it filed Friday with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. Tesla is framing it as way to “reset” its stock price, which has gone up dramatically in the past few years — 43.5 percent since the company’s last stock split in August 2020.
“While this value appreciation has led to our employees benefiting enormously through the years, we want to make sure all employees, no matter when they join, have access to the same advantages,” the company states.
The electric car maker’s stock closed on Friday at $696.69 a share, down 22 percent from the previous day and at a total market valuation of more than $721.8 billion. But at prices that high, it’s difficult for individuals — especially retail traders using platforms like Robinhood — to own more than fractional shares of the company.
If the stock split goes into effect, Tesla shareholders would receive two additional shares of common stock on that date. Institutional investors are largely neutral on stock splits, considering the value of the stock tends to stay the same.
“We believe the Stock Split would help reset the market price of our common stock so that our employees will have more flexibility in managing their equity, all of which, in our view, may help maximize stockholder value,” Tesla states. “In addition, as retail investors have expressed a high level of interest in investing in our stock, we believe the Stock Split will also make our common stock more accessible to our retail shareholders.”
Tesla also disclosed that Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison — who is also helping finance Elon Musk’s takeover bid of Twitter — will not be up for re-election to Tesla’s board of directors. But Tesla doesn’t plan on replacing him. Instead, the board will reduce its number of seats from eight to seven.