(TSLA.O) has reached a fever pitch, with the news that two senior executives are leaving Elon Musk's electric-car maker emerging hours after he smoked marijuana during a podcast interview streamed live online.
Meanwhile, its chief people officer Gaby Toledano had decided not to return to the firm after a period of absence, according to newswire Bloomberg.
Shares in Tesla fell by as much as 9% on the same day the electric vehicle maker lost two executives and its boss was filmed smoking cannabis during an interview. Musk, the billionaire owner of two companies, explained it's like a "never-ending explosion" inside his head. Once Rogan clarified that it was indeed weed rolled in tobacco leaf, Musk feigned experience, exclaiming "I think I tried one once", behind a series of quick head nods.
As Musk took a puff, and sipped on whiskey, the two discussed the relaxing effect of alcohol and weed.
Tesla also lost Eric Branderiz, Morton's predecessor as chief accounting officer, in March. Tesla's stock is down more than six percent to $262, the lowest level since April.
Musk caused jitters for shareholders last month when he announced, out of the blue, that he was planning to make the company private, before backtracking and saying it would remain public.
Elon Musk announced some major executive changes at Tesla, shuffling in a new president to oversee automotive operations, a new Gigafactory vice president in charge of ramping up Model 3 production, and a new duo to lead Tesla's human-resources division.
"I can not answer questions about potential future products". "I want to be clear that I believe strongly in Tesla, its mission, and its future prospects, and I have no disagreements with Tesla's leadership or its financial reporting", Morton was quoted as saying. Before the podcast came to a close, Musk told Rogan that he had already received inquiries about the controversial toke. The activist short seller has alleged in the lawsuit that Musk manipulated the price of Tesla shares by issuing materially false and misleading information.
Even before Musk's surprise August 7 tweet that he had funding "secured" for a go-private deal, Tesla had been under scrutiny from investors, analysts and short-sellers as it works to hit production targets and slow its cash burn. Left argued that the CEO committed stock manipulation and securities fraud ー shares immediately soared after that post, but have since fallen more than 30 percent.
Indeed, Tesla's board is rumored to be searching for another executive to help Musk.