On the subject of factories

On the subject of factories

Dear Tesla,

This will sound a bit stupid, because you obviously know all about this already (or something smarter). However, I really want you to succeed, so I'll share this idea anyway.

Right now, you are seeing a lot of demand from Scandinavia, especially Norway. That's because
1) cars in general are very expensive in these countries, due to taxation, as is petrol (also due to taxation)
2) governments are generally very pro-environment, and open to subsidizing various "green" projects
3) there is little local competition, compared to e.g. Germany. actually there is only Volvo, which isn't exactly doing great
4) people are pretty well-off and "green"-minded - it's a bit like California, except the weather sucks

At the same time, your costs to sell cars in Europe are high because of import duties and shipping.

Now, here's my suggestion. In the area of Gothenburg, in Sweden, both Volvo Cars and Saab Automotive have contributed to creating a "car production cluster", with plenty of access to skilled workers and subcontractors. Problem is, neither Volvo Cars not Saab are doing well. They have both been sold to Chinese buyers, and I'm not sure those Chinese buyers will keep the production if their business plans don't work out.

So why not place a plant somewhere around Gothenburg? There is all the infrastructure you need, including ready access to ports for shipping, all placed inside the EU. And it's really close to Norway, but offers much lower-cost labor. Probably, there is also soon at least one factory looking for a new owner, so I'm pretty sure the local and state government would do almost anything to have you establish yourself there if they lose either Saab or Volvo.

I know you're planning to build in Holland instead, but this might part of a longer-term plan?

Anyways, hope I'll see you around soon.

Joshua Burstyn | 18 January, 2013

Interesting idea!

I think Tesla should fly you all-expenses paid to CA where you can present this idea to the team. :-)

david_se | 20 January, 2013

I think so too :-)