Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) has been partnering with Toyota Motor Corp (ADR) (NYSE:TM) (TYO:7203) for some time, but that relationship may be starting to come to an end. Toyota management has made it no secret that they see fuel cell vehicles as being the future of transportation, so it comes as little surprise that they trimmed their stake in the electric vehicle manufacturer.
Toyota stays mum on remaining stake
Toyota first invested in Tesla in 2010 when it sunk $50 million into the Silicon Valley-based automaker. At that time, the amount was a 3.2% stake. Data from Bloomberg indicates that Toyota held 2.94 million shares of Tesla as of the end of March, which was a 2.4% stake. At Tesla’s current share price, a stake that size would be valued at around $690 million, reports the Financial Times.
A spokesperson for Toyota said today that they still have a “good relationship with Tesla” and that they will consider whether it’s feasible to work together on other projects in the future. The Japanese automaker did not say how much of a stake, if any, it still holds in Tesla Motors.
Will Tesla and Toyota work together again?
Tesla has been making the batteries and electric motors for Toyota’s Rav4 electric SUV. However, that deal is close to its end, as Toyota is approaching its goal of selling 2,500 by this year.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk went to Tokyo last month and hinted that they might work together again in two or three years, suggesting that there could be a “significant deal” at some point. He also said that they “love working with Toyota.” Last month, a Toyota spokesperson said they had no “new or pending projects under discussion.”
Musical chairs with Tesla
This week it was also revealed that Daimler AG (OTCMKTS:DDAIF) (RA:DAI) (ETR:DAI) had sold its 4% stake in Tesla Motors, making Toyota the second automaker to look toward cutting ties with Tesla. It’s been speculated that Bayerische Motoren Werke AG (ETR:BMW) (FRA:BMW) picked up Daimler’s stake, although that has not been confirmed.