I don’t know who is happier: journalists who cover the company on a regular basis or Tesla’s small, overworked comms staff.
Tesla has been without a VP of comms since Ricardo Reyes, who led Tesla through its 2010 IPO, left for Square in 2012. In that time, Tesla has rolled out the Model S sedan, seen its stock price skyrocket, and been under increasing scrutiny from the financial press, the tech press, the automotive press and the mainstream press. Liz Jarvis-Shean has been holding down the fort since joining Tesla in July; Shanna Hendriks went on maternity leave shortly before the first fire involving a Model S this fall. The company is also battling car dealer associations in several states, including New Jersey.
CEO Elon Musk is Tesla’s leading voice, and does much of the marketing for the company himself via strategic use of Twitter. Sproule, whose long automotive career includes a stint at Microsoft, comes as Tesla expands into Europe and Asia, begins production of the Model X, and hones in on a location for its planned $5 billion “gigafactory” for battery production.
Photo of Simon Sproule via his LinkedIn profile.