Tesla’s Chief Financial Officer Zachary Kirkhorn stepped down from his role at the company. He assumed given the title of ‘Master of Coin‘ as Elon Musk chose ‘Technoking’ for himself back in March 2021.
Zachary resigned from his role as Tesla CFO on Friday 4th August according to a 8-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Although Zach has stepped down as CFO, he will be helping the company with a smooth transition to his successor Vaibhav Taneja.
The 8-K filing states the following on Zachary Kirkhorn’s departure from Tesla (TSLA) and the ascension of Mr. Taneja as the next CFO of the company:
As of August 4, 2023, Tesla, Inc. (“Tesla”) appointed Vaibhav Taneja as Chief Financial Officer in addition to his current role as Chief Accounting Officer, to succeed Zachary Kirkhorn. Mr. Kirkhorn stepped down as of August 4, after a thirteen-year tenure with the company, the last four years of which he has served as Master of Coin and Chief Financial Officer. During his tenure, Tesla has seen tremendous expansion and growth. Tesla thanks Mr. Kirkhorn for his significant contributions. Mr. Kirkhorn will continue to serve Tesla through the end of the year to support a seamless transition.
Prior to this appointment as CFO, Mr. Taneja, 45, served as Tesla’s Chief Accounting Officer since March 2019, as Corporate Controller from May 2018, and as Assistant Corporate Controller between February 2017 and May 2018. Mr. Taneja served in various finance and accounting roles at SolarCity Corporation from March 2016. Prior to that, Mr. Taneja was employed at PricewaterhouseCoopers in both India and the U.S. between July 1999 and March 2016.SEC 8-K file number 001-34756
Vaibhav Taneja has previously worked at PricewaterhouseCoopers which is Tesla’s current independent registered public accounting firm.
Zachary Kirkhorn has not yet removed his title as Tesla CFO from his LinkedIn profile. Similarly, Vaibhav Taneja hasn’t changed his title and still shows his designation as the Chief Accounting Officer (CAO) at Tesla.
When Mr. Kirkhorn was named Master of Coin, he was touted as a successor to Tesla CEO Elon Musk. But after 13 years of working under Elon Musk who is one of the most hard-working CEOs on the planet, Zach decided to end his journey at Tesla. According to analyst Gene Munster, working under Elon Musk for 13 years is like working 50 years for anyone else.
Elon Musk tweeted a farewell note for Zachary Kirkhorn to wish him good luck in his future ventures.
“I would like to thank Zach Kirkhorn for his many contributions to Tesla over the course of 13 often difficult years,” Musk said. “Much appreciated and best wishes for the next stage of his career,” further added to his tweet.
In another tweet replying to a Tesla retail investor and his fan, Elon Musk said that the last 13 years have been a long tour of duty for Zach, and he deserves some quality time with friends and family.
According to another SEC filing (form 144) by Tesla, Zachary Kirkhorn sold 3,750 Tesa (TSLA) shares on Friday 4th August as well. At the time of selling these shares were valued at $978,750. Zach also sold a total of 14,903 shares in June & July which gave him cash proceeds of $3,456,911 (~3.45 million USD).
Zachary Kirkhorn joined Tesla as a Senior Finance Analyst in March 2010. After serving 1.5 years in this role, he was gradually promoted to Senior Manager, Director, Senior Director, and Vice President of Finance before finally taking the Tesla financial helm as CFO in March 2019.
Before joining Tesla, Zachary worked at Microsoft and McKinsey & Company. Zachary Kirkhorn succeeded Deepak Ahuja as CFO of Tesla in 2019 when Deepak finally decided to leave the company. Deepak is currently serving as Chief Business and Financial Officer at Zipline.
It is yet to be seen what Zachary Kirkhorn decides as the next move in his career after working more than 13 years at Tesla under the leadership of Elon Musk.