One of the greatest inventors of our time, and the man that seems to be able to make any of his dreams come true. Elon Musk has led an incredible life so far, but how much do we really know about the famous entrepreneur?
Elon Reeve Musk was born in South Africa on June 28, 1971. By the age of 12, Musk had already taught himself how to programme computers which he used to code a video game that he sold for $500. However, things weren’t easy for Musk as he was badly bullied by his peers to the point he was once pushed down a set of stairs and knocked unconscious. It was at 17 years old that he and his family moved to Canada.
Musk got accepted into University where he studied physics, as well as later picking up economics. Ever the one to learn, Musk extended his university time so he could complete both subjects. Musk and his roommate decided to turn their time studying into a business adventure as they rented an enormous frat house that they converted into an off the record nightclub. With two degrees in hand, Musk moved to California when he was 24 to work towards his Phd., but dropped out after the second day so he could focus his time on space travel and creating renewable energy.
Initial money making idea
Musk and his younger brother quickly went into business together after taking a loan from their father. The two put their heads together and thought up Zip2, a company that focused on linking businesses and giving directions to the public, but later grew to provide city guides. In 1999 the company was bought out which made Musk a tidy $22 million from his shares.
The birth of PayPal
Musk put his new money towards setting up X.com in 1999, a company that provided email payments. The following year he decided to merge with the group working on PayPal. Musk decided to put all the focus into the business by giving money to people that used the service. However, in 2001 the other company directors forced Musk out as they didn’t agree with his ideas anymore. Even though he was no longer CEO, Musk still owned over 11% of the company so received a check for $165 million when eBay bought PayPal.
Musk quickly moved on to pursue one of his passions: space. The young entrepreneur wanted to purchase a rocket that he would be able to send into space, but he felt they were too expensive. This led to the creation of SpaceX in 2002 where Musk could design and build his own instead. His goal is to have a population of 80,000 living on Mars by 2040 so has got plans in the works to send resources up there over the next few years before moving on to send a crew up there.
The electric car
Musk’s other passion in life is renewable energy, so it was only fitting that he helped develop Tesla, an electric sports car manufacturer. He eventually became CEO of the company in 2008 after it was quickly going into financial disrepair due to manufacturing issues with the company’s first electric vehicle. The Nevada factory is now one of the largest buildings in the world alongside promising to create as much energy as they use manufacturing the cars.
In recent years Musk has taken his work underground – literally. The inventor has been working on pods that can vacuum travel people across cities at lightning fast speeds. As no one was willing to help Musk, he opened up the concept to the public where various ideas were submitted which are currently being tested out. Musk has also begun work on a tunneling system that will allow users to drive onto an electric sled that will transport them across the city at speeds up to 125 mph.
It seems as though nothing can stop Musk once he gets an idea in his head. Maybe next time we see him, he will be eating space toast from the comfort of his Mars home, or flying around in his bubbles powered aircraft.