Tesla names board director to replace Musk

Tesla CEO Elon Musk

The announcement comes ahead of a November 13 deadline that was part of Musk's settlement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to end claims he misled investors.

The electric auto maker has announced that Robyn Denholm, who has been an independent director at the business since 2014, will step up to become chairman with immediate effect.

Ms Denholm, who has spent four years on Tesla's board, is chief financial officer and head of strategy at Telstra, Australia's biggest telecommunications company.

She will take on the full-time role at Tesla after serving a six-month notice period at the Australian firm.

Announcing the appointment, Tesla said in a statement that to "ensure a smooth transition...."

Musk sparked an SECC investigation into Telsa by claiming on Twitter he had secured funding to take the company private from the Saudi sovereign investment fund.

Denholm has served on Tesla's board since 2014.

Mr Musk agreed to step down as chair last month to resolve claims of fraud brought by United States financial regulators.

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'I look forward to working even more closely with Robyn as we continue accelerating the advent of sustainable energy'. The 47-year-old billionaire will remain as chief executive.

The tweet was one of a number of public statements by Musk that raised questions in the industry about his aptness to lead the company.

A Tesla spokeswoman said that Denholm will receive an annual cash retainer of $300,000 and 8,000 stock options annually.

"The market reacted to this information and Tesla's stock price quickly traded up", said Stephanie Avakian, the SEC's Co-Director of the Division of Enforcement, in a September news conference.

Two days after the lawsuit, Musk reached a settlement with the commission, agreeing to a personal fine of $20 million, a separate $20 million fine by Tesla and his resignation as chair.

It all started with an August 7 tweet.

South African-born Musk called Unsworth "a pedo guy" after he criticized him in a television interview about the dramatic rescue and called his called Musk's mini-submarine a "PR stunt".

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