Elon Musk (photo credit – Wikipedia)
Who is Elon Musk?
Elon Musk has been in the news a lot lately. The entrepreneur and billionaire mogul has been busy running the space-exploration firm SpaceX and the currently popular car company Tesla Motors, with both equally newsworthy as the next. There’s no doubt that Musk is an inspirational figure to many, showing us that determination and hard work will help you get to his status (if you’re lucky), couple that with the fact that his mission at the moment is to progress humanity and take them to new worlds has made him such an influential person in history that people everywhere want to be like him.
He doesn’t let anything stop him, and continuously takes on new challenges, never backing down until it happens. He’s taken on aviation giants, oil companies, the aerospace industry and the biggest names in the auto industry and came out reining supreme each time.
What truly makes him admirable is the fact that he doesn’t seem motivated by either financial or commercial success, but just by the mere fact that he’s doing something for all of humanity’s future. And he’s still young, so who knows what else Elon has up his sleeves in the future!
Born in Pretoria, Transvaal, South Africa, Elon had always been into engineering and science. He taught himself how to program computers by the time he was 12 and then moved to Canada to go to Queen’s University when he was just 17.
His education journey continued to the University of Pennsylvania two years later to get a degree in Economics from their Wharton School as well as a physics degree from their College of Arts and Sciences. Education seemed to be his route when he started his PhD in applied physics and material sciences at Stanford but dropped out to let his entrepreneurial spirit run free, which proved to be the right decision.
First he co-founded the web software company Zip2, which was bought by Compaq for $340 million in 1999. Next was X.com – an online payment company – that merged with Confinity in 2000 to become what we now know as PayPal, which eBay bought in 2002 for $1.4 billion.
That was also the year he founded SpaceX and then Tesla a year later. In 2015, he co-founded OpenAI, a nonprofit research facility to promote AI and then Neuralink in 2016, which is a neurotechnology company that focuses on coming up with brain-computer interfaces. That same year he founded the Boring Company, which is a tunnel-construction and infrastructure company.
So as you can see, Elon Musk has been a very busy man ever since he realized how to harness his entrepreneurial skills and hasn’t looked back since. Musks ideas and visions for the future are unlike any other entrepreneurs, often making people question his validity, but nevertheless, he does it anyways and succeeds. But think about this.
In the 10 years since SpaceX was created, he has really created more innovation to space travel and more than any other large country in the past 60 years!
He’s made the company NASA’s biggest contractor and plans to put humans on Mars within 15 years. And the way his track record has been, it seems likely given his perseverance and aptitude to succeed once he’s put his mind to something.
Then with Tesla, his mission is to advance the cause of EVs, hoping to one day see everyone drive one (he’s been adamant about making more electric cars so that are affordable to reach that goal).
But that’s not to say he hasn’t faced challenges. In fact, in late 2008, his three companies were facing bankruptcy just days before the New Year. But not one to back down from a challenge, he was able to secure a $1.6 billion contract from NASA to resupply the International Space Station and was able to raise enough money from past Tesla investors to make sure his companies survived.
Turning 47 this year, Musk has surely created an impressive resume for himself and is no doubt going to reshape the future and go down in history as one of mankind’s most extraordinary humans.
It’s likely that Elon Musk has a lot of roadblocks and challenges ahead of him as he continues to see how he can reshape the future, rethinking important topics like energy, space, transport and more!