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BY Abu Mubarik, 2:00pm February 26, 2024,

Shop that lost thousands after Tesla unexpectedly canceled order without paying is bouncing back

Tesla owner Elon Musk. Photo: U.S. Air Force / Trevor Cokley/Wiki

Voahangy Rasetarinera is the founder of Giving Pies, a San Diego, California-based bakery. In an interview, the owner revealed that Tesla made a large order on February 14 for a Black History Month event. Tesla reportedly ordered 4000 mini pies worth more than $2,000 from the small, Black woman-owned business.

However, Tesla, owned by South African-born entrepreneur Elon Musk, canceled the order before any payment was made, and the bakery took a big hit. Rasetarinera told NBC Bay Area that the bakery had to shift its employee work schedule and spend $2,000, only to be informed via text message two days later that the order had been canceled.

“It felt like we didn’t matter,” Rasetarinera said about how she felt her company was being disrespected. “It felt like, ‘OK, it’s no big deal; it’s just a business transaction that didn’t pan out.’ But it’s not like that. I had to tell my staff to change your plans.”

Meanwhile, Musk has promised in a tweet that he will “make things good” with the owner of the bakery. Nonetheless, Rasetarinera said she is now cautious about doing business with large corporations.

She told ABC 7 that she was initially worried when the invoice didn’t come through within the day of the order. The next night, a company representative asked to double Tesla’s initial order.

“I’m like, ‘Okay, I’m going to wait, you know, and they are professional; they are a big company. So once it’s approved, it’s approved.’” Rasetarinera explained that a Tesla representative called her after 9 p.m. “She said, ‘Oh, I’m so sorry that vendor hadn’t paid you yet; I think they’re kind of new,’” Rasetarinera recollected, “‘And I have a question for you: can we double the order?’”

Due to the new order, the company canceled other orders and bought additional ingredients to make the pies. However, after contacting the representative to follow up, Rasetarinera received a text message informing her that the order had been canceled.

“This abrupt reversal left me reeling, realising the extent of the impact on my small business. I had invested time, resources, and effort based on assurances from Tesla, only to be left high and dry,” she shared on Instagram.

After sharing the predicament on Instagram, the experience went viral and has led to an increase in traffic for Rasetarinera’s business, according to ABC 7. Rasetarinera said the support she has received has been overwhelming. “The amount of support that we have received is beyond what I even expected,” she noted.

San Jose Mayor Matt Mahan said on Saturday, “I was really overjoyed to get here and see a line out the door and into the parking lot there’s a ton of community support. This is what San Jose is all about.”

Meanwhile, Rasetarinera said she hopes her story would urge other large corporations to respect the time and effort of smaller businesses.

“I don’t want them to feel like, ‘Oh, you know, we can do whatever. It’s people’s lives that they are affecting, and I want them to know that,” she said to ABC 7.

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: February 26, 2024


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