Welcome to the weekend, friends. Phil Rosen here — today I’m excited to share my conversation with a high-profile Tesla shareholder who recently campaigned for a board seat at Elon Musk’s company.
As always, if you have any suggestions for who I should interview next, let me know on Twitter @philrosenn, or email me email@example.com.
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Elon Musk in a cowboy hat and sunglasses in a celebratory pose
Twitter CEO Elon Musk appearing at a 2022 Tesla event.Suzanne Cordeiro/AFP via Getty Images
Ross Gerber is the cofounder and CEO of Gerber Kawasaki Wealth and Investment Management, and holds 420,000 shares of Tesla stock, or about $74 million based on Tesla’s current stock price. This conversation has been lightly edited for length and clarity.
Phil Rosen: What was your takeaway on Musk at this week’s annual shareholder meeting?
Ross Gerber: Elon had his mojo back. Seeing his energy and enthusiasm, him being around the people who love him and he loves, you can see he’s clearly happy.
He came out swinging pretty hard with the business plan, $25,000 car, Cybertruck, self-driving — then he followed it with a mainstream media interview, which he killed.
It was literally the best PR day for Tesla since the Twitter disaster began.
Musk appointed a new CEO of Twitter on May 12, days before the shareholder meeting. How did these two events impact your investment view on the stock?
RG: You gotta own Tesla in your portfolio with Elon re-focused on Tesla.
Over the first quarter I was a net seller. I went from 440,000 shares to 420,000, but now I’m back to a buy.
I went from a hold and somewhat bearish, to a buy and somewhat bullish. The only thing keeping me from outright bullishness is the broader economy.
What do you want to see the EV company do next to get to the next level?
RG: It comes down to service and quality. Tesla needs a quality and service czar whose job it is to make sure customers are having good experiences.
Tesla needs to understand that they have millions of users, and someone has…