Elon Musk just said so himself.
Tesla is currently worth over $584 billion. It is now the world's most valuable automaker, a title achieved last July when it overtook Toyota. It's now vital for Tesla to maintain this position and continue to post hefty profits courtesy of continued Model 3 and Model Y sales. The upcoming Tesla Cybertruck will play a significant role as well. Despite Tesla's success, it appears CEO Elon Musk is now open to merging with another automaker.
Musk was recently speaking at an event in Berlin, Germany where he was asked about the possibility of buying a rival company. Tesla's high market valuation places it in a perfect position to launch a takeover of a weaker rival.
According to Reuters, Musk wasn't opposed to the idea. "We are definitely not going to launch a hostile takeover. If somebody said it would be a good idea to merge with Tesla, we would have this conversation," he said.
General Motors was once rumored to be interested in buying Tesla in order to gain immediate access to its valuable technologies, specifically batteries, over-the-air updates, and platforms. Whether that's true or not, Tesla was determined to go at it alone and the bold approach has paid off big time with its soaring valuation. Back in 2014, Daimler, the parent company of Mercedes-Benz, sold its stake in Tesla and Toyota did the same in 2017. Tesla has not had any partnerships since then and both automakers might now be regretting their decisions.
Musk refused to go into more detail regarding a potential merger, but the fact he revealed he was open to the possibility will surely cause some boardroom discussions elsewhere. Buying even a minority stake in a rival would hardly cause a dent in Tesla's bank account.
Toyota is now the second-most valuable global automaker with a valuation of $190 billion, followed by Volkswagen Group ($94 billion), Daimler ($74 billion), BYD ($71 billion), and GM ($64 billion). The next American automaker on the list, Ford, takes the fourteenth position with a valuation of about $37 billion. Obviously, the circumstances for such an acquisition would have to be right, but Musk is clearly keeping his options open.