At exactly 3:38pm GMT on Tuesday, Barclays released an exhaustive, 89-page pdf research report titled "iNDUSTRIE 4.0 VS. Tesla’s ‘lights out’?", which if it wasn't clear by the title, explained "why Tesla is deeply overvalued and a structural short." A terrific report, and one which an increasingly insecure Elon Musk will be quick to deride and mock, it had just one problem: nobody read it, especially not Americans, and certainly not tech investors, at least according to Barclays.
In an amusing post-mortem note published shortly after the full report was distributed to Barclays clients, its author Kristina Church slammed not only TSLA CEO Elon Musk - as one would expect - but also the "tech investor" collective which has elevated Musk on a pedestal, and - for good measure - also took a shot at, well, Americans in general because why not. To wit:
"while European readers may if anything view this tome as skimpy, we recognize that many US investors, and dare we say especially those on the tech side, need a Twitter-length summary of it."
So with that fantastic trolling of its US and tech clients in mind, here are Barclays' five "quick 140-character takes" provided by Barclays to underscore its point, "all of which support our view that BMW’s modular strategy and near-term SUV mix improvements are deeply underappreciated by the market, whilst Tesla’s stock is deeply overvalued and a structural short." (incidentally, we hope all other sellside desks adopt this practice of summarizing nearly 100-page reports into a few pithy soundbites):
- Hey @elonmusk: German OEMs & other dinos you have mocked will be rolling out exciting new BEVs -- 6 new models in ’18, & 13 in’ 19 (p. 27-28)
- Production hell, nein; Industrie 4.0, ja: German mfg is state of the art now & gets better w/ a harmonious blend of humans + robots, AI, IoT
- TSLA went a robot too far? Despite the quest for an “Alien Dreadnought” @elonmusk admitted that automation needs to be dialed back, is that good for gross margins?
- Showdown on scale: German OEMs will leverage scale economies either thru large native EV platforms (VW) or modular approaches (BMW)
- With solid & profitable EVs coming while TSLA struggles, legacy OEMs deserve rerating – BMW (European OW, Top Pick) and GM (OW in US Autos)
And while we will have more details from the full report shortly, here for the benefit of "dumb Americans and tech investors" is Barclays' primer explanation which summarizes the 89-page pdf into "only" 42 slides.