San Francisco/New York — Tesla says it is searching for independent directors after an influential group of investors put pressure on the car maker’s board to add two members who do not have ties to Elon Musk. Five of Musk’s six fellow board members had personal or professional connections to the Tesla CEO, which could jeopardise their independence, the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (Calstrs) and four other investors wrote on Monday in a letter to Tesla’s lead independent director. The managers of a combined $721bn in assets also pushed for yearly elections of directors, rather than votes staggered every three years. "Directors should be held to a higher standard of independence given the conflicts of interest that permeate this board," the letter to Tesla director Antonio Gracias said. "A thoroughly independent board would provide a critical check on possible dysfunctional group dynamics, such as groupthink." Cousins The push is a signal that longstanding concerns wi...

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