Tesla CEO and Co-founder Elon Musk lobbed one of his worst remarks in the recent times as he called one of the British cave divers involved in the rescue of 12 Thai children last week, a "pedo".
The repercussion of his tweet resulted in Tesla becoming the worst-performing stock on the Nasdaq index. Its share crashed by 3% at USD 310.10. It fell even further in the after-hours trading session to $US307. The electric car company has lost almost 2 billion USD of its market value.
Angry investors were involved in heavy selling as Tesla shares nosedived, the repercussion of which left the company in a losing streak on Nasdaq. Interestingly, Tesla was America's most valuable automaker, worth more than General Motors, only a few months ago.
It all started when Musk tweeted about his company working on a miniature submarine to help rescue the 12 Thai boys trapped in a flooded cavern, which had received global attention with over 1000 personnel involved in the operation. Elon Musk had visited the caves and offered to dispatch a miniature submarine but was then rejected by the rescue operation team.
Vernon Unsworth, a British diver who played a key role in the rescue operations had called dismissed the use of the submarine as impractical and called it a PR stunt.
Reacting to his argument, the Tesla CEO tweeted on Sunday calling Unsworth a paedophile. Though the tweet was later deleted due to public outrage, Musk was severely criticized for his careless remark.
The electric car company's stock has plummeted over 16 percent since last month, losing billions of dollars off its market value. The setback has come at a time when the company is still dependent on the investors' cash and confidence. The company reported a loss of over 2 billion USD last year and is yet to break even.
Large shareholders of Tesla have now begun to question how the short temper of the company's CEO could affect the growth of the company.