Apple Said to Have Made 'Serious Bid' of ~$240 Per Share to Acquire Tesla Around 2013

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It has long been rumored that Apple plans to compete in the electric vehicle market in some capacity, ranging from supplying other automakers with underlying technologies to developing its own vehicle entirely, and new information suggests that Apple may have been eyeing a major acquisition to boost its efforts.


Namely, Apple is said to have made a "serious bid" for Tesla around 2013, offering around $240 per share. That's according to Craig Irwin, a senior analyst at investment firm Roth Capital Partners, who said he has "complete confidence" in this information, but he doesn't know if the bid reached a "formal paperwork stage."

"Around 2013, there was a serious bid from Apple, at around $240 a share," said Roth, speaking on a CNBC video highlighted by AppleInsider. "This is something we did multiple checks on. I have complete confidence this is accurate."


"I don't know if it got to a formal paperwork stage, but I know from multiple different sources that this was very credible," he added. "So, right now, Apple is building multiple, very large dry rooms in California... they're doing something interesting and exciting on the battery side... Project Titan is absolutely not dead."

Tesla had 114.5 million shares outstanding as of January 31, 2013, and that number increased throughout the year, so Apple's bid would have totaled at least $27.4 billion at the time. Now, the electric vehicle maker's shares are trading around the $203 mark, well below Apple's reported bid years ago.

Tesla's technologies and facilities, including its assembly plants in California and Nevada, certainly would have helped Apple's so-called "Project Titan" automotive ambitions in big ways, but the extent of Apple's plans are still unclear.

A recent report said Apple is seeking LiDAR units that are "smaller, cheaper and more easily mass produced" than current systems, which can cost over $100,000 and are considered "too bulky and prone to failure" for use in mass-produced vehicles. Apple is said to be "setting a high bar" with demands for a "revolutionary design."

Last year, Apple rehired its former VP of Mac hardware engineering Doug Field to work on Project Titan after a five-year stint as Tesla's engineering chief. Apple has a team of about 1,200 employees working on the project, according to court documents, but recent restructuring led to 190 layoffs.

Apple has been developing and testing autonomous driving software out on the streets of Cupertino, California using Lexus SUVs since early 2017. It's still unclear if we'll ever see a so-called Apple Car, but analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes a release wouldn't be until 2023 to 2025 either way.

Article Link: Apple Said to Have Made 'Serious Bid' of ~$240 Per Share to Acquire Tesla Around 2013
 

iAVERY

macrumors regular
Sep 11, 2016
108
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Do ittttttt. Apple can afford to mess something up. Buy Tesla and let apple CFO straighten everything up. Tesla autopilot married to CarPlay = apple car.
 

Sasparilla

macrumors 65816
Jul 6, 2012
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That's interesting. Apple probably would have put some stability / discipline / production knowledge in place and Musk probably would have fled (cause he wouldn't have been able to stand not micromanaging things). Tesla would be a very different company at this point if that had happened (no $35k promises from an Apple Tesla) - but they'd probably not be rolling from crisis to crisis (or financial knife edge to knife edge) either - would have had plenty of money to expand their product line. JMHO...
 

ftaok

macrumors 603
Jan 23, 2002
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Tesla had 114.5 million shares outstanding as of January 31, 2013, and that number increased throughout the year, so Apple's bid would have totaled at least $27.4 billion at the time. Now, the electric vehicle maker's shares are trading around the $203 mark, well below Apple's reported bid years ago.
Just doing the math here, which is woefully incomplete.

TSLA has 177.3 million shares outstanding currently (per Yahoo finance). At a $203 share price, the market cap is $36B.

So even though the share price is lower now than when Apple was bidding on it, it would cost Apple more to buy TSLA now than it did in 2013.

Very misleading paragraph and probably should be updated.
 

NoHardFeelings

macrumors newbie
Dec 4, 2016
29
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Had Apple made an Apple Car, the Series 3 would have be priced starting at $99,999 instead of $35,000.

The car would also come with a notch ;)
 
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taptic

macrumors 65816
Dec 5, 2012
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Do ittttttt. Apple can afford to mess something up. Buy Tesla and let apple CFO straighten everything up. Tesla autopilot married to CarPlay = apple car.
I have a hard time believing Apple could straighten Tesla up better than they already are. Tesla has that drive to make something amazing. Apple seems to be mainly interested in their stockholders.
 

sinsin07

macrumors 68040
Mar 28, 2009
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It would have been interesting in an alternate timeline where Elon Musk is acquired as Steve Jobs was with NeXT to ultimately become CEO. Elon would definitely bring a different style of leadership than Tim
And so what.
You could bring in a monkey and that would also be a different style of leadership than Tim.
The question in your alternate timeline is would Elon be a good fit.
 

satchmo

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Aug 6, 2008
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I would rather Apple develop something different than be just another player in the autonomous vehicle space.

Maybe something a safe one person electric vehicle like the Solo, but better looking.
 

Lazy

macrumors 6502
May 27, 2003
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Silicon Valley
I don't believe it at all. Saying things like "serious bid" but with no "formal paperwork" and "drive room" whatever that means doesn't sound credible. Especially when coming from someone and some company no one's ever heard of. Doesn't sound like this guy even knows how acquisition offers are done.
 
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realtuner

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Mar 8, 2019
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If the rumor is true, good thing it never went through. Only thing Tesla has of any value is their name brand. Nothing in their cars is groundbreaking or better than what other automakers already have access to.
 

wigby

macrumors 68000
Jun 7, 2007
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I have a hard time believing Apple could straighten Tesla up better than they already are. Tesla has that drive to make something amazing. Apple seems to be mainly interested in their stockholders.
Apple already did make many amazing things and Tesla is currently struggling. Apple is searching for the next big thing which is why an Apple/Tesla car rumor will not die. Apple prices many customers out of the market but is also very conservative in their marketing and engineering promises, unlike Tesla. I could easily see Apple absorbing Tesla (back in 2013 or today) and cleaning house in order to introduce an Apple Car by 2025.
 
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farewelwilliams

macrumors 68030
Jun 18, 2014
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I’ve spent extensive time in all Tesla vehicles. You must have a low bar to consider it the best you’ve ever driven.
Considering the instant torque and the smooth ride from an EV blows out any gas car I've ever driven, what other EV car would you suggest?
I've driven the Model S. Performance is better but I don't like the Model S due to the interior looking extremely dated. Would gladly choose a Model 3 over the S.
 
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