As you know, elections breed a fair amount of cognitive dissonance.
Which brings us, naturally, to the other vote taking place this month: the decision on Tesla Motors Inc.’s acquisition of SolarCity Corp., scheduled for Nov. 17.
The latest ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ episode came on Friday morning. International Shareholder Services Inc. issued a report urging investors to vote for the deal and containing this gem of a line:
Tesla has — within the confines of its suboptimal governance structure — taken the requisite steps to reassure its shareholders…
Taking steps within confines is, of course, a ticklish task. Even Elon Musk seemed surprised at the outcome. Later that day, though, rival proxy-advisory firm Glass, Lewis & Co. took a somewhat different view:
Stripped from the pretense of creating a fully-integrated renewables retailer serving a loosely framed end-market, we believe non-affiliated Tesla investors should be concerned the proposed tie-up of Tesla and SolarCity mostly amounts to thinly veiled bailout plan (sic).
I have tended to hew more to that view (see here and here). The idea that SolarCity is a vital, healthy, must-have target is belied by the fact that it agreed to sell itself for a low-ball, all-stock offer that, as of early Monday afternoon, barely provides a premium to the undisturbed price: