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UPDATE: Report: Tesla accounting chief left after input on privatization ignored

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UPDATE: Report: Tesla accounting chief left after input on privatization ignored

Tesla Inc. Chief Accounting Officer Dave Morton left the company Sept. 4, after concluding that he was not being heard on a potential take-private deal, CNBC News reported Sept. 7, citing an anonymous source.

Morton joined Tesla Aug. 6. The next day, CEO Elon Musk tweeted his interest in taking Tesla private at $420 a share and said he had secured funding.

According to the report, Morton then met with Musk to discuss details that would make the plan difficult, including equity change-of-control provisions and potential step-ups in Tesla's debt associated with a new controlling shareholder.

Musk and other executives appeared indifferent to the financial issues that concerned Morton, CNBC said, and ignored him when he offered advice on capitalizing the company through other means.

In the Sept. 7 SEC filing announcing his departure, Morton said the amount of "public attention placed on the company" and the "pace within the company" exceeded his expectations. "As a result, this caused me to reconsider my future," he said.

"I want to be clear that I believe strongly in Tesla, its mission, and its future prospects, and I have no disagreements with Tesla's leadership or its financial reporting," Morton added.

Tesla's accounting functions will be overseen jointly by the CFO and corporate controller, according to the company's filing.

Morton's departure is the latest in a string of setbacks for Tesla, which came under fire after Musk unexpectedly announced via Twitter during trading hours that he would privatize the maker of electric cars, only to abandon the idea a few weeks later.

In a Sept. 7 interview with comedian Joe Rogan, Musk largely avoided controversy but admitted to having made "mistakes" on Twitter.

Separately, Bloomberg reported that the company's human resources director, Gabrielle Toledano, had resigned. There was no official confirmation on Tesla's website or via a regulatory filing.

Tesla's chief engineer, Doug Field, also left the company after an approximately five-year tenure to return to his former employer Apple Inc. in August, Bloomberg reported Aug. 10.

Tesla's shares were down 6.90% to $261.56 in afternoon trading Sept. 7.