Elon Reeve Musk is a modern age business tycoon and investor. He is the founder, CEO, and Chief Engineer of SpaceX; angel investor, CEO, and Product Architect of Teska Inc., founder of The Boring Company; and co-founder of Neuralink and OpenAI. With an estimated net worth of around US$265 billion as of May 2022, Musk is considered to be currently the wealthiest person in the world. He grew up in South Africa, then immigrated to Canada at age 17. He landed in the U.S. as a transfer student to the University of Pennsylvania.
He created his first company – Zip2 in 1997, a firm which provided maps and business directories to online newspapers, that was later bought by Compaq in 1999. Then he created X.com which eventually merged with PayPal, and went public in 2001, and in 2002 eBay bought the firm for $1.5 bn. In 2002, he formed SpaceX and since then the aerospace firm has covered several milestones over the years.
In 2004, Musk invested heavily in Tesla, an electric car company as he believed electric vehicles to be the future of mobility. Two years after introducing the first car, Tesla, in 2008, introduced the Model S sedan, which was praised by automotive critics for its performance and design. The company eventually made him a billionaire at the age of 40 and in 2012, Musk became the CEO of Tesla, which is currently the most valued automobile company in world.
In the early part of 2012, the cynics had to take notice of what Musk was actually accomplishing. His once beleaguered companies were succeeding at unprecedented things. SpaceX flew a supply capsule to the international space station and bought it safely back to Earth. Meanwhile tesla motors delivered the Model S, a beautiful, all electric sedan that took the automotive industry’s breath away and slapped Detroit sober. These two feats elevated Musk to the rarest height among business titans.
SpaceX became the first company to successfully relaunch and land at the first stage of an orbital rocket in late 2017. In 2020, SpaceX made history on May 30, after it flew NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken, to space aboard its Crew Dragon spacecraft using a Falcon 9 rocket.
It was only after Ashlee Vance was going through the front doors of SpaceX that the grandeur of what this man had done became apparent. Musk had built an honest to god rocket factory in the middle of Los Angeles. As she has rightly said “Musk had struck everyone as a well-intentioned dreamer and a mix of an Ayn Rand devotee and an engineer absolutist who see their hyper logical worldviews as the answer for everyone.