The "Hiro" They Deserve: Tesla Brings On Vocal Anti-Short-Selling-Official As "Independent" Director

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by Tyler Durden
Friday, Apr 24, 2020 - 12:59 PM

Hiromichi Mizuno has been appointed to Tesla's Board of Directors, the company announced on Thursday. He will also serve on the company's audit committee, according to filings made on Thursday. 

And who better to help oversee Tesla? After all, Mizuno's track record includes overseeing Japan's $1.5 trillion Government Pension Investment Fund for the last 5 years. 

In his time as portfolio manager, he has emphasized the environment and sustainable investing, according to Nikkei. He has also conveniently made a reputation for "challenging short-selling to promote long-term value creation by corporations."

He halted stock lending from the $400 billion GPIF portfolio in December, apparently fitting right in with Musk, who has woven his own conspiratorial narrative about the evils of short sellers, whom he once called "jerks who want us to die."

"I never met a short seller who has a long-term perspective," Mizuno once said to FT. 

All the while, Tesla stock has advanced to over $700 per share. So why all the worry about short sellers at this stage of the game, if that's part of the reasoning for bringing Mizuno on (and we suspect it is)?

Mizuno's track record also includes serving at the World Economic Forum's Global Future Council, the Japanese government's strategic fund integrated advisory board, and the board of the PRI, an investor initiative to promote responsible investment in partnership with the United Nations.

His initial compensation package is going to include up to 6,778 shares of Tesla stock, today valued at about $4.2 million.

Tesla said in a statement: "In addition to his understanding of financial markets and economics, Hiro brings to the Tesla Board an expertise in international policy. We are excited that Hiro has joined our mission to accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy."

Tesla could be a perfect fit for a guy moving on from doing the BOJ's dirty work. As one social media user put it yesterday, Mizuno appears to just be moving "from one failed scheme to another".