Tesla has a long history of promoting talent from within. Outside hires don’t last for very long in the carmaker’s scrappy, hard-charging culture, and it takes a certain stamina to work for Elon Musk.
Tesla’s new CFO, Vaibhav Taneja, already has a hefty gig serving as the company’s chief accounting officer. Tesla watchers were surprised to hear Monday that he was replacing Zach Kirkhorn, a 13-year Tesla veteran who abruptly stepped down from the CFO post.
While Kirkhorn has been a calm, steady presence and regularly spoke at length with investors, even playing the role of Musk’s surrogate the time he skipped Tesla’s earnings presentation, Taneja is less well-known. He has spoken briefly on just one Tesla earnings call, back in early 2019.
Taneja, 45, didn’t respond to a request for comment on Monday.