Tesla shares rocket on profits news

<p>Tesla’s profits beat the expectations of analysts.</p>

The share price of Tesla rose strongly in the US yesterday (February 19th) after the company announced a stronger set of financial results than had been predicted.

Tesla, which was founded by US billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk, stated that it earned $46 million (£27 million) in the fourth quarter, which was well in excess of analyst expectations.

Mr Musk said in a letter to shareholders that the Model S – the flagship car in Tesla's range – has become the top-selling vehicle in North America among comparably priced cars.

He said: "The potential in Europe and Asia is even more significant. Towards the end of the year, we expect sales in those regions combined to be almost twice that of North America."

Asian markets targeted

Tesla confirmed that it is now expecting deliveries of its Model S electric car sedan to increase by more than 55 per cent to 35,000 vehicles this year, with China predicted to be a strong area of growth for the firm in the coming months.

"We plan to make substantial investments in China this year as we add new stores, service centres and a Supercharger network," Mr Musk said.

China has a rapidly growing middle class and the Tesla electric car is expected to be one of the most popular vehicles in the Asian nation during the course of 2014. Mr Musk said in the letter to shareholders that Tesla's Beijing store is "our largest and most active retail location in the world".

Shares in Tesla rose by more than 12 per cent on the back of the profits news in after-hours trading in the US last night, though the stocks had fallen in value by nearly five per cent during the day's session.

Mr Musk is currently one of the world's leading entrepreneurs and the grand plans he is currently working on include space travel, through his company SpaceX, which designs, manufactures and launches advanced rockets and spacecraft.

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