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87Daimler isn’t the only traditional automaker to take an interest in Tesla. After Musk took the com-pany public in 2010, Toyota bought $50 million (or 2.4 percent) of Tesla’s stock.88With this deal, Tesla got ownership of the New United Motor Manufacturing, Inc. (NUMMI), automotive factory, which it later purchased outright, in Fremont, California. NUMMI was initially set up as a joint venture between This document is authorized for use only by Benjmain Goldklang ([email protected]). Copying or posting is an infringement of copyright. Please contact [email protected] or 800-988-0886 for additional copies.
Tesla Motors, Inc.15Toyota and GM. GM withdrew from NUMMI as part of its bankruptcy reorganization in 2009. Tesla announced in October 2010 that it would go into a further partnership with Toyota by providing parts that will power the electric version of Toyota’s crossover SUV, the RAV4.89Like Daimler, by the end of 2014, Toyota had sold some of its 2.4 percent stake in Tesla.90Both, Daimler and Toyota, walked away with sizeable capital gains.In addition, Tesla managed to bring Panasonic, one of the world’s electronic giants, on board. Panasonic’s aim is to combine its experience in battery technology with Tesla’s capabilities in elec-tric powertrain development. The goal for Panasonic is to become the number-one Green Innovation Company in the electronics industry by 2018, the 100th anniversary of its founding.91International ExpansionAt the same time that Tesla was pursuing strategic relationships with leading electronic and auto-motive companies, it started to expand its network of company-owned stores. Previously, all sales had been conducted either via the phone or Internet or in person at corporate events or company headquar-ters. By early 2015, Tesla had over 60 sales locations throughout the United States and Canada, 40 storein Europe, and 7 in Asia.92However, Tesla appears to have stumbled in China with high prices, limited service locations, and problems with charging stations.93Tesla will continue to push internationally, and the company is targeting major metropolitan areas, including Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, London, Munich, Madrid, Tokyo, Hong Kong, and Sydney (Australia). To differentiate itself from its competitors and provide a superior customer experience, Tesla has opted not to create franchised dealers, but instead maintains all sales and service operations in-house. Still, the approach of owning its own stores and not franchising dealerships has led to legal issues in several states.94Beginning in 2010, the company also created a wholly owned subsidiary, Tesla Motors Leasing Inc., to provide a leasing alternative to its customers.95The program was “improved” in 2014 by bringing in U.S. Bank to provide the needed financing at a lower cost than Tesla.