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Elon Musk Reignites His Feud With Bill Gates

Elon Musk Reignites His Feud With Bill Gates

The pair are apparently at loggerheads over stock options.

Elon Musk is back feuding with Bill Gates after posting a series of tweets that saw him slam one of his predecessors as the world's richest man for holding a short position on Tesla shares worth as much as $2 billion.

Having shared a Twitter poll that asked his followers if they found politicians or billionaires to be less trustworthy - of which 75 percent said they trusted politicians less - Musk reacted to one commenter who quipped that they trusted Musk but not Gates.

“Since Gates still has a multi-billion dollar short position against Tesla while claiming to help with global warming, I guess I have some trust issues with him too,” Musk tweeted in response.

According to the New York Post, Musk’s disagreement with Gates over the shares came to light early April when it was revealed a text message exchange between the pair showed that Musk had confronted Gates about his $500 million short position on Tesla shares.

Shorting a company means that you're betting against it and predicting share prices will go down.

Musk's latest tweet, meanwhile, followed up a post he'd made last week where he'd claimed that the $500 million stake was now worth far more money because Tesla shares had risen in value since Gates made the move.

Elon Musk has hit out against Bill Gates.

“It was $500M, but then Tesla went up a lot, so now it’s $1.5B to $2B to close it out,” Musk wrote.

It's unknown as to when Gates took his short position in Tesla and so impossible to confirm Musk’s maths. Although the company’s stock is up 23 percent over the last 12 months, it’s also down more than 35 percent from its level on 1 January.

Gates hasn't yet publicly responded to Musk’s tweets.

The original text messages were published on pro-Musk Twitter account, @wholemarsblog - Musk later confirmed they were authentic.

Gates had texted Musk to 'discuss philanthropy possibilities.' However, Musk replied: “Sorry, but I cannot take your philanthropy on climate change seriously when you have a massive short position against Tesla, the company doing the most to solve climate change."

Gates has also questioned his rival's pursuit of buying Twitter, arguing that he could make it worse.

Gates spoke about the possibility Musk could have a negative impact on Twitter at a recent event, going on to say: “That’s not his track record – his track record with Tesla and SpaceX is pretty mind-blowing with putting together a great team of engineers and taking the people who worked in those fields in a less bold way and really showing them up.

“I kind of doubt that will happen this time, but we should have an open mind and never underestimate Elon."

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Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Elon Musk, Bill Gates, Twitter