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Data: FactSet; Chart: Axios Visuals

Shares of little-known SPI Energy Co. jumped by as much as 4,000% on Wednesday, rising from around $1 to as high as $46.67.

What happened: SPI announced it was launching a unit to design and develop electric vehicles and charging solutions called EdisonFuture — a nod to electric vehicle companies Nikola and Tesla, which are both named after Nikola Tesla, a rival of Thomas Edison.

  • SPI ended the day up 1,237%, at $14 a share and triggered at least seven volatility trading halts over four hours, Bloomberg reported, noting that trading volume hit nearly 350 million shares, more than 700 times its usual activity.
  • The company has about 15 million shares outstanding, and a float of about 7.4 million, according to Bloomberg's data.

Go deeper

Clean trucks are paving the road to the electric vehicle era

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The electric vehicle revolution is underway, led by the un-sexiest of plug-in models: the commercial truck.

Why it matters: Growing demand for cleaner trucks means 2021 will be a pivotal year for electric vehicles — just not the kind you might have expected.

Sep 25, 2020 - Economy & Business

Eyeing the end of gas-powered cars

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Gasoline-powered cars may be going the way of the woolly mammoth, even if it will take decades to replace them and seems hard to fathom today.

The big picture: Internal combustion engines (ICEs) have powered automobiles for more than 100 years. But the shift to electric vehicles, slow to materialize at first, is now accelerating due to tightening government policies, falling costs and a societal reckoning about climate change.

Aug 14, 2020 - Economy & Business

Elon Musk is channeling Henry Ford in auto manufacturing

Photo illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios. Photo: Zhang Peng/LightRocket via Getty Images

Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who has spent more than a decade trying to disrupt the traditional auto industry, is sounding more and more like the man most closely associated with it: Henry Ford.

Why it matters: In his quest to build affordable electric cars for the masses, Musk is starting to embrace many of the ideas pioneered by Ford's founder — things like vertical supply chains and an obsession with manufacturing efficiency. A century ago that approach helped to popularize the American automobile by lowering the cost of the Model T.