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Elon Musk nears $346 million payday as Tesla stock soars



Tesla boss Elon Musk may finally be poised to bag the first installment of an eye-popping, multiyear pay package worth as much as $56 billion.

For Musk to claim the first payout — in which $346 million worth of stock options would vest — Tesla will need to reach a $100 billion valuation and maintain it for a one-month and six-month average.

Tesla’s market capitalization — which has more than doubled since October, when the company reported a surprise quarterly profit — was just under $97 billion as of Tuesday’s close.

Musk does not take a salary from Tesla, and only earns money through performance-based rewards.

If he doesn’t reach any milestones, according to the company’s filing, he will not get paid.The South Africa-born billionaire then has eight years left to clear 11 more valuation hurdles, mostly in $50 billion increments, which would fetch him roughly $5 billion each.

To earn the full award of $55.8 billion, Musk would have to lead Tesla to a market cap of $650 billion by 2028. Tesla’s board signed off on the compensation package in March 2018, when Tesla shares were worth $52.46 billion.

Tesla last week said it delivered 112,000 vehicles in the fourth quarter of 2019, beating Wall Street’s estimate of 106,000. Its 367,500 deliveries in the 2019 calendar year beat its 2018 deliveries by 50%, despite only hitting the low end of its target range.

Tesla also recently delivered the first cars made at its new Shanghai Gigafactory, less than a year after breaking ground on the manufacturing facility.

Tesla stock rose 2.5% to $537.92 on Tuesday.

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