Daimler Invests In Tesla For 10% Equity, Investment Worth “Tens Of Millions”

Posted May 19, 2009

The automotive manufacturing company behind Mercedes-Benz, Daimler AG spent “tens of millions” of dollars to buy 10% equity of Tesla Motors.  Tesla, based in San Carlos has been working with Daimler for quite some time to improve battery technologies.

Daimler has already been selling an electric automobile called the Smart Car.  Tesla was the company that provided the batteries and chages for the Smart Car.

Daimler used to own Chrysler after merging in 1998.  Nine years later, Daimler sold Chrysler to Cerberus Capital Management.

Tesla is best known for building a roadster that costs over $100,000.  Last March the company announced a more affordable Model S electric sedan that costs about $57,400.  The Model S is able to get 160-300 miles on a single charge.

Earlier Tesla had attempted to raise $100 million in funding, but settled for $40 million from previous investors.  The partnership will also give Tesla access to Daimler’s “engineering production and supply chain expertise,” stated Tesla Chairman and CEO Elon Musk.  Herbert Kohler, VP of Daimler’s electric-drive systems will be joining the board of Tesla.

Musk was a co-founder of PayPal which sold to eBay for $1.5 billion.  Before that Musk sold a company to Compaq and merged a company with Confinity.  Musk is also the CEO and CTO of SpaceX.

[via LAT]