Elon Musk was born 1971 in South Africa, he now lives in the US and is known for PayPal, Tesla, SolarCity, SpaceX, Hyperloop and OpenAI.
Why is Elon Musk one of my role models?
Talk about making a difference! First he revolutionizes the way people could make payments over the internet via PayPal. He continues to pave the future of electric cars and solar power, at the same time as he is making the future of private space exploration!
Elon Musk makes me think: wow, if I could amount to a fraction of what he has, I would be so proud! He really shows that it is possible to make the world a better place for everybody, it just takes some really hard work!
It started with Zip2, a web software company he started with his brother Errol Musk, with his fathers money. This was 1995, four years later, 1999, Compaq buys the company for $307 Million! Elon gets 7% of that, $22 Million. At that time Elon was 28 years old.
He uses some of that money to found X.com, an online financial services and e-mail payment company. X.com merged with Confinity, which owned the payment service PayPal. The merged company was renamed to PayPal in 2001 and its main focus was the payment service PayPal. eBay acquired PayPal in August 2002 for $1.5 Billion in stock, Musk receives $165 Million of that!
Elon founded another company before the sale of PayPal, in June 2002, with the vision of a relatively inexpensive reusable rocket that would go into space multiple times. The company was named SpaceX.SpaceX have some major achievements under its belt, for example:
- The first privately funded, liquid-fueled rocket (Falcon 1) to reach orbit (28 September 2008)
- The first privately funded company to successfully launch (by Falcon 9) orbit and recover a spacecraft (Dragon) (9 December 2010)
- The first private company to send a spacecraft (Dragon) to the International Space Station (25 May 2012)
- The first private company to send a satellite into geosynchronous orbit (SES-8, 3 December 2013)
Elons long term vision with SpaceX is to enable human colonization on Mars! Talk about setting high goals!
Perhaps Elon Musk is most known for Tesla Motors, a company incorporated in 2003 by Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning. Elon Musk led the first round of funding in 2004, in which he funds the majority of series A shares with US$7.5 Million. He also takes a position on the Board of Directors as Chairman, while overseeing the product design of the Tesla Roadster.
In 2008 Tesla had taken in four rounds of financing and Elon replaced the quite newly appointed CEO and President. Tesla also lays off about 10% of its workforce. Tesla needed a fifth financing round in December of 2008 to avoid bankruptcy. In June 2009 Tesla receives a US$465 Million loan from the US dep. of Energy as part of the Advanced Tech Vehicles Manufacturing Loan Program. Tesla became the first car company to have fully repaid the loan in 2013.
In 2010 Tesla Motors launched its Initial Public Offering on NASDAQ (TSLA), becoming the first US car manufacturing company to go public after Ford had its IPO in 1956.As I’m writing this (18-12-2015) Tesla Motors is valued US$30.56 Billion, which can be compared to Ford $55 B, Volkswagen EUR 65 B and General Motors $55 B.
Teslas vision is to bring compelling mass market electric cars to the market as soon as possible!
If you liked this post about one of my role models Elon Musk, I recommend that you check our this documentary from Bloomberg on Elon Musk, its really interesting!
Elon Musk: How I became the real ‘Iron Man’ – Bloomberg Business
Thanks for reading, and thank you Elon Musk!-Samuraimannen