but it will still work in california
Tesla CEO Elon Musk said Thursday that the company is moving its headquarters from Silicon Valley to Austin, Texas, where it has been building a new factory for a little over a year.
Musk said Tesla will continue to operate its electric vehicle factory in Fremont, CA, and even plans to scale up and increase production there by 50 percent. “Just to be clear, however, we will continue to expand our activities in California,” he said during the company’s annual shareholder meeting. “So it’s not a matter of Tesla leaving California.”
Musk had previously threatened to pull Tesla’s entire operation out of California because he disagreed with shelter-in-place orders the state bowed to early in the coronavirus pandemic. Tesla also sued the county that the company has a California factory. Musk moved to Texas last year as SpaceX increased its presence there. The Tesla CEO said at one point that he felt California had become too “satisfied” with respect to its residents and businesses.
Tesla began construction of its next US Gigafactory outside Austin in 2020 and has made incredible progress in the intervening year. “We’re going to build an ecological paradise here.. on the Colorado River,” a reference to how the company plans to open up parts of the land to the public. Musk said Thursday that Tesla is also looking at doing more “major installations” of battery storage such as first reported bloomberg earlier this year.
Musk previously said that Tesla chose to build at other locations in Austin because employees were willing to move there.
“It is difficult for people to buy a house [in California],” Musk said on Thursday. Tesla’s Austin location is also near the local airport, which Musk described as convenient.
Tesla is moving to Texas at a time when many businesses have found themselves under pressure to quit, as the state recently passed one of the most restrictive anti-abortion laws in the country. After the law was passed, Texas Governor Greg Abbott tried to use Musk and Tesla as an example and proved it was not a trend. During the CNBC interview. Abbott said in September that “Elon had to move out of California, in part, because of the social policies in California,” and Musk “consistently tells me that he prefers the social policies in the state of Texas.”
Musk responded to that clip in a tweet, saying he “believes it”[s] Government should rarely impose its will on the people, and while doing so, should aspire to maximize their cumulative happiness. ”
“That said, I would prefer to stay out of politics,” he said.