Honors Program


Document Type


Date of this Version

Spring 4-30-2019


McCain, C. D. (2019). A Strategic Audit of Tesla, Inc. Undergraduate Honors Thesis. University of Nebraska-Lincoln.


Copyright Cody McCain 2019.


After Tesla completed its first every back to back profitable quarters at the end of 2018, sales started to decline in the first quarter of 2019 and many question if the company would every be profitable. Through a strategic audit of Tesla and the electric vehicle industry several key factors have been identified to help improve Tesla’s profitability. Analysis tools used to analyze the company and the industry include Porter’s Five Forces, SWOT Analysis, and PEST Analysis. At the conclusion of the audit there are three recommendations given to help improve Tesla’s strategy. First it is recommended that Tesla focuses in on achieving economies of scale by opening factories in both the European and Chinese markets. Second it is recommended that Tesla replaces Elon Musk as CEO of the company to foster more sustainable and stable decision making for the company. The last recommendation is to reduce research and development projects to only those that are the most sensible for the company to be investing in. The combination of these recommendations should hopefully help Tesla become sustainably profitable in the years to come.