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It’s official: Elon Musk changes job title from CEO to ‘Technoking of Tesla’

And Zach Kirkhorn, the company’s chief financial officer, will now be known as “Master of Coin”, Tesla said on Monday 15 March in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

The company did not say whether the new titles, which are effective immediately, would bring with them any additional duties.

Elon Musk, Kirkhorn to maintain respective positions

However, “Elon and Zach will also maintain their respective positions as chief executive officer and chief financial officer,” the filing stated.

Norm-shattering entrepreneur Musk, who has more than 41 million followers on Twitter and a fortune now estimated at more than $180 billion (R2.7 trillion), has had frequent conflicts with regulators at the SEC and is not shy about tweaking them on social media.

In 2018, the SEC charged Musk with fraud, slapped him with a $20 million (R298.3 million) fine and demanded he step down as Tesla chairman after he tweeted out a plan to take the company private.

Tesla’s bitcoin investment

Tesla helped push bitcoin to an all-time high on Monday 8 February after the carmaker announced a $1.5 billion (R22.4 billion) investment in the digital money and plans to accept the cryptocurrency from customers buying its electric vehicles.

Bitcoin’s value has risen by about 50% this year, but skeptics say it is still highly volatile and regulators warn it is vulnerable to illicit use.

Musk, an expert at disrupting corporate norms as well as economic structures, at the time briefly changed his Twitter bio to simply read “#bitcoin.

He has also taken to social media last month to promote dogecoin, another digital money that was originally launched as a joke but has suddenly become more valuable.

Bitcoin purchase to boost Tesla liquidity

In a securities filing, Tesla described the bitcoin purchase as an effort to boost company liquidity.

“In January 2021, we updated our investment policy to provide us with more flexibility to further diversify and maximize returns on our cash,” Tesla said in announcing the $1.5 billion bitcoin purchase.

As a result “we may invest a portion of such cash in certain alternative reserve assets including digital assets, gold bullion, gold exchange-traded funds and other assets as specified in the future.”

Tesla will also “begin accepting bitcoin as a form of payment for our products in the near future,” the company added.

By © Agence France-Presse

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