Elon Musk: Everything about the billionaire boss of Tesla and SpaceX

  • OfPaul Siethoff

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Visionary genius or self-centered power man? Elon Musk is extremely successful as an entrepreneur. But who is the SpaceX founder and Tesla boss really?

  • Elon Musk is because of him Shares in Tesla the richest person in the world.
  • As CEO of the Tesla Group gilt Musk as one of the most successful pioneers in the area of Electromobility.
  • Musks second mega project is this Space company SpaceX – with which the serial founder has in the long term first manned flight to Mars want to make possible.

Elon Musk comes from the capital of South Africa, Pretoria. Born in 1971, the future multi-billionaire grew up as the son of the mechanical engineer Errol Musk and the model Maye Muskwho also worked as a writer and nutritionist. The family was wealthy Musks Father is said to have owned half of an emerald mine in Zambia, even if the Tesla-Founder denied this in a tweet in 2019.

Elon Musk: A successful entrepreneur even as a young boy

It is clear that Elon Musk had an entrepreneurial knack early on: at the age of twelve, he programmed the video game Blastar, which he eventually sold to a computer magazine for $ 500. Musk moved away from South Africa at an early age, at the age of 17 he emigrated to Canada with his brother Kimbal and then moved to the USA. There he first studied economics and physics at the University of Pennsylvania before starting a PhD program in physics in California. The doctorate did not last long: broke after only two days Musk finished his studies.

Name Elon Musk
place of birth Pretoria, South Africa
Nationalities / citizenships South African, Canadian, American
Date of birth 28. June 1971
job Entrepreneur, founder of SpaceX, CEO of Tesla
Life partner Grimes (singer)

By selling several companies, Elon Musk becomes a multimillionaire

A little later, in 1995, the young entrepreneur and his brother founded their first start-up in the small town of Palo Alto in Silicon Valley: Global Link, later known as Zip2, was one of the first online directories for companies to feature an integrated map function had – a kind of pioneer of Google Maps. 1999 sold the Musk-Brothers sold their company to the computer manufacturer Compaq. The price: $ 307 million. The $ 22 million from the sale that Musk made the entrepreneur into a multimillionaire at the age of 27.

Elon Musk, 49, co-founded SpaceX, heads the electric vehicle company Tesla and is currently the richest person in the world.

© Britta Pedersen / dpa

Elon Musk’s success story: X.com, Paypal, SpaceX

Founded in the same year Elon Musk the online payment service provider X.com. For a short time, X.com merged with another company, which resulted in this merger Paypal. Paypal, in turn, was eventually sold to Ebay, which Musk – largest shareholder – added $ 165 million in net worth.

Founded in June 2002 Musk one of the two companies that made it famous around the world: Space Exploration Technologies, now known as SpaceX. MuskEnthusiastic about space travel himself, founded the company with the idea of ​​developing a particularly ambitious rocket project: The goal of the series founder is to carry out the first manned Mars mission with the help of the so-called Starship project and later even to colonize Mars. Although the plans of Musk almost megalomaniac is SpaceX actually one of the most important space companies in the world today.

Elon Musk and SpaceX: one milestone follows another

Especially since the decision of NASA in 2008, SpaceX The company has received international recognition for taking it under contract. The contract obligated SpaceXTo take over supply transports to the International Space Station ISS. Succeeded ten years later Musk With such a cargo flight, a PR coup that hit the media around the world: In February 2018, the Falcon Heavy missile broke from SpaceX on their first flight. Among other things on board: A Tesla Roadster that was released into space when the rocket arrived.

With SpaceX reached Elon Musk An even more important milestone at the end of 2020: In November, the Crew Dragon space capsule successfully transported two astronauts to the ISS. It was the first time that a private space company transported astronauts to the space station and the first time since 2011 that astronauts took off from American soil again – for Musk and his adopted home USA an important achievement.

CEO of Tesla, sponsor of Hyperloop and OpenAI

Probably even better known Elon Musk today as CEO of Tesla – although strictly speaking he is not one of the founders of the company. Musk joined the electric car pioneer as an investor in 2003, one year after the company was founded. The entrepreneur later became the company’s supervisory board chairman, and is now the group’s chief executive officer. Tesla has developed into the most influential electric vehicle company in the world within a few years and has a market value of around 810 billion US dollars (around 674 billion euros; as of February 3, 2021), which not only makes Tesla the fifth most valuable stock corporation in USA, but also Elon Musk the richest person in the world: The entrepreneur owns 21 percent of the TeslaShares and thus currently has assets of 156.42 billion euros, according to the Forbes business platform.

Musks first great success with Tesla consisted of the Roadster model, the world’s first electric series-production vehicle with a battery system made up of lithium-ion cells. Produced today Tesla not only the models S, X and 3, but is also a manufacturer of energy storage systems for private households. In Germany, the group started talking after Musk announced the construction of a battery factory, called the Gigafactory, east of Berlin in Brandenburg. It is also worth mentioning that Musk big fan and promoter of the technology Hyperloop is. This aims to enable goods and people to be transported at a very high speed. He also supports the project OpenAI, one of the world’s leading organizations in the field of artificial intelligence.

Elon Musk’s Family Life: So far two marriages, seven children and three divorces

Also the private life of Elon Musk is not exactly uneventful: The serial founder and entrepreneur has a total of seven children, five of them from his first marriage Justine Musk (nee Wilson). Married in 2010 Musk the Actress Talulah Riley. He divorced Riley in 2012 – and then remarried in 2013. So it went on happily: In 2014 the couple divorced, but the separation was canceled in mid-2015. Today is the partner of Musk the 32-year-old from Canada Singer Grimes. He has a son with her, the Musk and Grimes gave the name “X Æ A-Xii” and thus triggered a public debate around the world. (Paul Siethoff)

Headline list image: © Britta Pedersen / dpa