Elon Musk replaced as Tesla chair

Tesla announced that Elon Musk's replacement as its chair will be Robyn Denholm, currently chief financial officer at Australian telecommunications operator Telstra.

Tesla weathered a rocky few months in the wake of Musk's tweets that he had "funding secured" for a deal, later scuttled, to take Tesla private. Musk and Tesla settled with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in September after the U.S. agency sued for fraud.

The settlement required Tesla and Musk to pay a fine of $ 20 million US each and for Musk to give up his chairman role for three years. The 47-year-old billionaire will remain as chief executive.

Denholm will leave her role as CFO and head of strategy of Telstra once her six-month notice period with the company is complete, Tesla said late on Wednesday.

Tesla said Denholm will be serving as chair on a full-time basis. She will temporarily step down as chair of Tesla's audit committee until she leaves Telstra, the company said.


In the settlement, the SEC pulled back from its demand that Musk, who is synonymous with the Tesla brand, be barred from running Tesla, a sanction that many investors said would be disastrous.

"I think this is the best possible outcome for everyone involved," said Ivan Feinseth of Tigress Financial Partners, who rates Tesla "neutral," who added the SEC's penalty was only a slap on the wrist for Musk.

"The fact that he can remain CEO is very important for the company."

Neither Musk nor Tesla admitted or denied the SEC's findings as part of the settlement.

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