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Elon Musk under pressure - Saturday Extra

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Tesla Said to Close a Dozen Solar Factories in the US

We now know that the alleged employee, Martin Tripp, is being accused of much more than previously thought.

Over the weekend, CEO Elon Musk sent an email to employees alleging that a former employee had sabotaged the company by interfering with code and leaking sensitive information.

The company plans to close between 13 and 14 facilities, shutting its doors across nine states including California and NY.

Tesla is seeking relief under the Defend Trade Secrets Act, in addition to Nevada's own trade secret statute.

The nine states targeted for closure are California, Arizona, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Texas, New Hampshire, Maryland, and CT. An internal email, also obtained by Reuters, only mentions 13.

Amid Tesla's efforts to ramp up the production of its Model 3 sedan, Musk took to Twitter to reveal that he was thinking about letting auto owners participate in the assembly of a Tesla vehicle. The company faces investor pressure to turn a profit without having to tap Wall Street for additional capital. The move is expected to increase the cost of residential solar installations, one of Solar City's main businesses, by $500 to $1,000 in 2018.

While a marketing staple of solar energy companies, door-to-door sales of SolarCity products are no longer allowed by Tesla.

"Tesla stores have some of the highest foot traffic of any retail space in the country", Tesla said.

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Building a vehicle assembly line outside a traditional factory is unprecedented in the auto industry, the Gartner research director Mike Ramsey told Business Insider.

Tesla solar deployments have declined over the last few quarters. In February, Musk announced plans to expand the agreement.

Most of Tesla's vehicle assembly occurs in a factory building in Fremont, California.

On Thursday, Tripp told Ars that he wanted to reveal internal waste and safety flaws in Tesla batteries that he claimed he observed while working as a technician at the company's Gigafactory in Sparks, Nevada.

In filing this lawsuit, Tesla demanded a trial by jury. The company did not respond to requests for comment.

Expensiveness is another factor Tesla has had to face this far regarding generating solar sales.

Tesla said it planned to prove exactly how much it deserved to receive in damages during the trial, but given the claims in Tesla's lawsuit, you can bet it's not peanuts. He also said he was not, as Tesla lawyers claimed, disgruntled about not getting a promotion. Reuters, however, quoted an analyst as saying the message that the market received with the shutdowns and the end of the Home Depot partnership was that Tesla had "no strategy for selling solar".

"It's an expensive account", the former employee said, "but it does bring in all the revenue".

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