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UPDATED: Tesla's 100th Roadster Customer Is … Sam Perry

UPDATED Tesla really wants some positive PR. For the past couple of months, the electric vehicle startup has been dogged by news of its layoffs, its formerly dwindling bank account, and its inability to raise a $100-million financing round on the terms it wanted. Tesla’s hard times have raised questions about the company’s overall strategy and resulted in it being included in trend stories about the struggling electric vehicle industry.

So what’s a company to do? Throw a media event and stage a public hand-off of No. 100 of its high-end EV, the Roadster. Tesla says that the 100th person to take the keys is an “interesting customer in his own right,” but isn’t a Hollywood celebrity. Hmm, any guesses? We’re thinking maybe a politician like San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom or California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger? If you have any thoughts or insight, add ’em in the comment section and we’ll update the post Tuesday at noon Pacific, when Tesla’s event is scheduled to get under way.

UPDATE: It’s Sam Perry, president of startup consultancy Ascendance Ventures and a member of Environmental Entrepreneurs. Perry also recently drew a lot of national headlines as the mystery man who lended his shoulder to Oprah Winfrey to cry on during Barack Obama’s election night speech.


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