Elon Musk Is Pushing To Expand Tesla in California

The electric vehicle company is broadening its presence in the Golden State with a big move.

The former Hewlett Packard  (HPQ) – Get Free Report campus in Palo Alto, Calif., is now in the hands of Tesla  (TSLA) – Get Free Report CEO Elon Musk.

Tesla’s global engineering headquarters will occupy the space, it announced at a press conference with California Gov. Gavin Newsom and Musk on Feb. 22.

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“I couldn’t be more proud of California’s commitment to support Tesla over the course of the last few decades,” Newsom said, according to ABC7 News in San Francisco. “It’s demonstrable in terms of policy, in terms of direction, more broadly.” 

Musk discussed California’s importance to the electric vehicle company, discussing output at its Fremont, Calif., manufacturing facility.

“So we’ll probably do 600,000 or more cars this year, if all things considered go well,” Musk said, according to ABC7.  “To your point, California is a tremendous manufacturer as well as a place of engineering and innovation.”

The expansion involves hiring engineers for research, development and artificial intelligence in the interest of producing Tesla’s self-driving and robotics technology.

Image source: Tesla

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“This was HP’s original headquarters, and so I think it’s a poetic transition from the founders of Silicon Valley to Tesla and we’re very excited to make this our global engineering headquarters,” Musk told CNBC. “And we’re a California-Texas company.”

Musk expanded on his feelings about doing business in California.

“I think California should be cautious about taxes and over-regulations going too far,” he said. “Objectively, Tesla has done nothing but increase its footprint in California. Both in terms of manufacturing and engineering and personnel. Every year we’ve grown our headcount in California without exception.”

Musk has talked in the past about what he sees as California’s tendency to over-regulate and over-tax.

“I’m not anti-California,” he told CNBC. “One has to strike a balance and say there’s a lot of good things about California and there are some challenges. California could make it easier to do manufacturing but we encourage legislators to consider their actions long-term.”

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