Tesla names new chair to replace Elon Musk

A Tesla Inc. Model S electric vehicle is displayed at the company's showroom in Newport Beach California U.S. on Friday

A Tesla Inc. Model S electric vehicle is displayed at the company's showroom in Newport Beach California U.S. on Friday

The settlement requires Tesla to install an independent chairman, among other penalties.

Two days after the lawsuit, Musk reached a settlement with the commission, agreeing to a personal fine of $20 million, a separate $20 million fine by Tesla and his resignation as chair.

Ms Denholm is now Chief Financial Officer at Australian biggest telecoms company, Telstra, and already sits on the board of Telsa as an independent director.

The announcement scotches reports that James Murdoch was the frontrunner for the job.

Tesla weathered a rocky few months in the wake of Musk's tweets that he had "funding secured" for a deal, later scuttled, to take Tesla private.

That alluded to shortsellers, investors who have bet that Tesla shares will fall and who are frequently the subject of Musk´s derision.

Mr Musk, Tesla's controversial co-founder, resigned as head of its board in September.

U.S. authorities sued the entrepreneur for misleading investors and he and Tesla were each fined $20m.

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"We are undertaking a search for a new chief financial officer and will provide an update on a replacement appointment as soon as possible", Mr Penn said.

In the settlement, the SEC pulled back from its demand that Musk, who is synonymous with the Tesla brand, be barred from running Tesla, a sanction that many investors said would be disastrous.

Musk will help ease the new board director´s transition, Tesla said. However, the carmaker made what Mr Musk called an "historic" profit in the most recent quarter.

She will take on the full-time role at Tesla after serving a six-month notice period at the Australian firm.

She will also be leaving her role as CFO and Head of Strategy at Telstra.

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Musk said: 'Robyn has extensive experience in both the tech and auto industries, and she has made significant contributions as a Tesla Board member over the past four years in helping us become a profitable company.

Ms Denholm has served on the Tesla board as an independent director since 2014 and has also worked in Silicon Valley and for companies including Toyota.

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