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Is Tesla Motors the New Apple?

Eric Dutram

At one time, Apple (AAPL) was easily the most popular stock in the U.S. market. Nearly every investor was watching or invested in the company, and it didn’t hurt that AAPL shares were surging as well.

However, the love for all-things Apple has died down lately as shares of the computer giant have plunged. The once high-flyer is now down 25% over the past year, erasing many memories of its historic surge.

Thanks to this downfall, many investors have been looking for the next glamour stock, a firm to take the mantle from AAPL and captivate investors. While it has been a difficult search, some believe that we have found that next hot stock in newcomer Tesla Motors (TSLA).

Tesla has burst onto the scene in the past year thanks to its impressive looking cars, strong demand, and high-flying stock price. In fact, TSLA shares have skyrocketed by more than 400% in the past one year period, catapulting the company up the charts and into a number of investor portfolios.

Many are looking for this run to continue too, and the similarities between TSLA and AAPL are really starting to build. Consider a few of the following that they both have in common:

  • Stock price- Both experienced an incredible surge, pushing them to the forefront of the investment news cycle in the process.
  • CEO similarities- Elon Musk has been called ‘the next Steve Jobs’ and the vision of both men is largely credited for the rise of their respective firms.
  • Product focus- Apple never focused on the low end consumer during Jobs’ heyday. The company zeroed in on ‘aspirational products’ and this has largely been Tesla’s goal as well.
  • Second mover ‘advantage’- Apple didn’t invent the mobile phone and Tesla didn’t invent the electric car. Both transformed those products though and set a new standard in their markets.

However, some investors aren’t so sure, and believe that this might be a company that isn’t ready for prime time, or at least not the next Apple. Some of these reasons include:  

  • Profitability- Is Tesla really going to make money? The company is projected to post a loss this year, but is looking to somehow turn it into a 50 cent a share profit for the following year. This obviously is in huge contrast to Apple which has been making piles of profits.
  • Government help- Many argue that Tesla is only where it is today thanks to the government. First the loans and now a plethora of tax credits which help to keep consumer costs of the cars down. Would TSLA be in its current position without these subsides?
  • Good Comparison- Can you really compare a company that has sells roughly 5,000 cars in a quarter to one of the world’s most popular consumer products that sells more than 30 million iPhones in a quarter?
  • Given what has happened to Apple stock lately, is being the next Apple even a good thing?

But what do you think? Is Tesla the next Apple stock, or is the company just a flash in the pan?

Let us know in the comments section below!

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