Tesla CEO Elon Musk has declared himself “Technoking,” appointing chief financial officer Zach Kirkhorn as “Master of Coin.” The pair will keep their old posts as well, making the title shakeup less of a restructuring and more the latest example of Musk using his company and prestige to make jokes.
The new titles are official, appearing in paperwork filed with the securities and exchange commission. The purpose of the document appeared to be only to log the new positions with the government.
“Effective as of March 15, 2021, the titles of Elon Musk and Zach Kirkhorn have changed to Technoking of Tesla and Master of Coin, respectively,” the filing reads. “Elon and Zach will also maintain their respective positions as Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer.”
Musk has been notably more relaxed about public image than other wealthy CEOs, even risking an SEC investigation for his effusive praise of the meme-heavy virtual currency Dogecoin.
His public persona has occasionally landed him in hot water, such as when a marijuana toke on Joe Rogan’s podcast tanked stock, threatened his relationship with NASA and prompted an inquiry into his security clearance.
It’s also garnered Musk a rabid following with substantial influence in the realms of cryptocurrency, stocks and technology. His cult of personality has no doubt contributed to Tesla’s astronomical stock price, which almost octupled in 2020.
That said, Musk’s erratic behavior has prompted uncertainty in broader audiences. Tesla’s stock went from $880 at the start of 2021 to $560 on March 8. A recent fire at a California factory and reports of rampant COVID-19 infections among staff have also dampened the company’s public image.
None of that has been enough to get to Musk, who continues to joke about Dogecoin and needle “Woketopia” via his Twitter.