After dedicating nearly 13 years to Tesla, Zachary Kirkhorn, the Chief Financial Officer of the electric car manufacturer, has decided to depart from the company. Tesla, in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, revealed that Vaibhav Taneja, the Chief Accounting Officer, will take over Kirkhorn’s role. This transition will be facilitated with Kirkhorn’s assistance until the end of the year.
Zachary Kirkhorn confirmed his departure through a LinkedIn post, expressing his gratitude for the unique journey he has been a part of at Tesla over the past decade. He acknowledged the exceptional accomplishments achieved during his tenure and praised the dedicated employees who have contributed to Tesla’s remarkable success. Kirkhorn also acknowledged Elon Musk’s leadership and inspiring vision, which has left an indelible mark on the company.
Earlier in the year, speculation had emerged that Kirkhorn might potentially become Tesla’s next CEO. The Wall Street Journal had reported that Tesla’s board members had considered him as a possible successor to Elon Musk. This speculation gained attention during a trial concerning Musk’s substantial Tesla pay package. Although Kirkhorn’s departure from Tesla has now been confirmed, any future roles he might undertake within Musk’s other ventures remain uncertain.
Kirkhorn’s approach to leadership at Tesla, which involved addressing challenges transparently and assisting in mediating between Musk and the company’s staff, earned him the approval of Elon Musk. His reputation for delivering unwelcome news and his willingness to work collaboratively in the background set him apart.
Zachary Kirkhorn’s journey at Tesla began in 2010 when he joined as a senior analyst. Over the years, he climbed the ranks and became the Chief Financial Officer in 2019, succeeding Deepak Ahuja. Under his financial stewardship, Tesla’s valuation has experienced significant growth. Before his tenure at Tesla, Kirkhorn was associated with McKinsey & Company as an analyst and had also interned at Microsoft.
As Tesla prepares for an eventful quarter ahead, with the imminent launch of its highly anticipated Cybertruck, the departure of Zachary Kirkhorn marks a significant transition for the company. While his next endeavours remain uncertain, his contributions and leadership have undoubtedly played a role in shaping Tesla’s journey in the electric vehicle industry.