Elon Musk, Masayoshi Son talked in 2017 about SoftBank investing in Tesla

Masayoshi Son. Photographer: Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg

Elon Musk and Masayoshi Son held talks last year about SoftBank Group Corp. investing in Tesla Inc., including potentially taking the electric carmaker private, according to two people with knowledge of the discussions.

Son and Musk met in April 2017 to discuss an investment in Tesla, the people said. The talks touched on taking Tesla private, but failed to progress due to disagreements over ownership. Musk proposed a structure that would have given him disproportionate control over the company through stock with supervoting rights, one person said. There are no active talks between the companies now, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing private deliberations. Tesla spokesmen didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment on Wednesday. A SoftBank spokesman declined to comment.

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