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Tesla has been cooperating with Panasonic for a long time and although there was tension between the companies, at the moment all issues seem to have been resolved. Panasonic is negotiating new investments in Nevada, and the head of the company publicly called his colleague, Tesla CEO Elon Musk “genius.”
Musk is "a genius," Panasonic's CEO Kazuhiro Tsuga said on Tuesday. He said that only geniuses can have such a big vision, and Musk is undoubtedly a genius.
"I believe only geniuses can hold onto big visions, and a genius I know is Elon Musk."
Tsuga also said that Musk is a great optimist, and this is what allows him to ignore the inconvenience and run towards his goal, realizing his vision. When he goes to the realization of his vision, no inconvenience becomes important enough.
"Compared to that vision, most things don't really matter."
Panasonic has partnered with Tesla for more than a decade, but it was Tsuga who made a $1.6 billion bet on the Nevada battery factory. According to the data, over the past 2 quarters, Panasonic has reported a profit from it which is a convincing argument that a joint business with Tesla is the right choice.
In May, Panasonic Chief Financial Officer Hirokazu Umeda said that negotiations are underway with Tesla to expand production facilities. “We are in discussions right now” about expanding the plant’s capacity, he said.
According to Umeda, this will be a necessity, since Tesla is experiencing growing demand. “We are seeing strong demand from Tesla” beyond the Nevada plant’s current capacity of 35-gigawatt hours per year, he said.