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Elon Musk's Tesla Profits Beat Coronavirus; First Time in The History it Posted Positive Net Income in Three Consecutive Quarters

By Renz , Apr 29, 2020 09:38 PM EDT
(Photo : neowin)

Elon Musk's Tesla has seen one of its more profitable quarters amid the coronavirus pandemic. The company earned a net profit of $16 million and a total of $227 million profit, excluding special items. This positive profit was marked after several losses in the previous year's quarters.

The success comes as a contrary event to Refinitiv's previous forecast, where the company was set to take a numerical hit due to the shutdown of its California and Shanghai factories along with reduced sales for its completed vehicles in comparison to last year's fourth quarter.

Shares of Tesla (TSLA) gained a near 10% boost in after-hours trading, as said in the report. They now have more than double in price since starting the year, although not quite as high at their peak in mid-February before the attacks of the coronavirus.

Tesla cannot guarantee the continued positive profits as the sheer unexpectedness of the effects that the COVID-19 pandemic brings to the market.

A remarkable result amid the hardship

The car company stated to its investors the difficulty of predicting the long-term effects the outbreak has on sales and marketability of their products, especially how long until the speed of manufacturing and global supply of the vehicles return to previous levels.

It also said that the full range of possible results and effects of the pandemic would lead to inaccurate near-term guidance of net income and free cash flow.

Tesla also believes they would be able to achieve world-leading operating margins and profits even amid the halt on near-term profit guidance.

The company said it could manufacture 500,000 vehicles this year alone amid the obstructions that the coronavirus pandemic has caused. It stated that they are currently on course to receive its best sales quarter in all its history before the suspension of its factories in California.

Experts were impressed by the numbers garnered by Tesla, although they warned the company that the current period will be a tough time to be in.

Executive publisher at Kelley Blue Book Karl Brauer said the results of the first quarter is a hint that the company cut corners and is making significant progress on its business model.

Brauer also said Tesla is one of the leading companies in the automotive industry, which helps it maintain its appeal and brand popularity amid the pandemic.

The publisher believes Tesla is more likely to outlive its competitors in the field, but it doesn't guarantee continued profits and appeal as it's not immune to the effects of the shaken market.

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The success of Tesla for this quarter comes as an unprecedented first that it has gained three positive quarters in its succession, contradicting its 2018 numbers where they have only received two positive quarters since their conception.

This profitable quarter is the 5th of its seven profitable quarters and suggests that corners were cut on its profitability. Last year marked its first achievement of a positive return when special items were excluded.

The company shared their expectations of having continuous profitability in the coming future this early January.

Which models are making headway?

The production company's model Y is a recently-made and cheap SUV that is expected to be a top-seller among its products and has already raked in significant profits after only having been produced early this year. The event marks another first the company achieved in profiting from a vehicle that has only been in production in the same quarter.

The gross margins on the Model 3 sedans, which were being built in its Shanghai factory, which was only opened in late 2019, however, are already catching up to the margins of the California factory.

With good results come some negative development, as it had postponed the production of a semi-tractor it had planned to release starting late this year back to 2021.

The company did not share the information regarding the losses to its investors, however, as Musk has repeatedly been skeptical of the steps being taken against the COVID-19 pandemic, even tweeting "FREE AMERICA NOW" on Tuesday night.

Elon Musk is set to meet with investors and analysts on Wednesday evening.

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