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Understanding the Proper Value of Tesla Motors

Here’s a good article, selected from the ton of them I see, on how to analyze the value of Tesla Motors. The author argues, as many others have before, that those who ridicule Tesla’s astronomical market cap are missing the point that Tesla is more than just a “car company.”

For what it’s worth, I agree – for all the reasons laid out in the article linked above (it’s also a retailer, a purveyor of batteries, technology licensor, etc.) – but also a few others. As the company (arguably) most directly responsible for electrifying transportation in the U.S., I fully expect Tesla to use its incredible wit and insight to capitalize on the other larger pieces of the puzzle:

• Telematics used to connect the car and driver to the rest of the world, alleviating traffic jams, finding parking spaces, facilitating ride-sharing and micro-rentals, etc.

• “Vehicle to grid” (V2G), using the energy stored in grid-connected batteries to provide ancillary services to the power utilities

• Smart-charging, helping (especially) the wind energy industry integrate more renewable energy into our grid-mix

• Who-knows-what else, as the fast-charging network grows and affluent EV drivers sit captive for 20-minute intervals, looking for something to do (read: “buy”).

Elon Musk has already demonstrated his genius more than once; anyone who isn’t expecting more is not paying too close attention.