In the last weeks we have constantly talked about Elon Musk, who has finally gotten his way and has reached an agreement to acquire Twitter. The manager will pay 44,000 million dollars to acquire 100% of the shares of the social network, at a price considerably higher than the market price. In fact, Musk has offered 54.20 euros per share, 38% more than what each title was worth at the beginning of the month.
Elon Musk created his first successful company at the age of 24
But… who is Elon Musk and how has he become the richest man in the world? What is the meaning of this disbursement that he is going to make, which represents the largest technological purchase in history and which for him is only 25% of his fortune? In this article we are going to explain who Elon Musk is and how he has become in the quirky manager that everyone is talking about this week. You can find out everything in this video:
Elon Musk was born in South Africa, the son of a local engineer and a Canadian model. From the age of 8 he was already programming with a Commodore computer, and at the age of 12 he sold his first game to a computer magazine in the country, which paid 500 dollars for the title to distribute it among its readers.
Passionate about computers and shy by nature, he was teased by his school and high school classmates for years. When he came of age, he decided to move to Canada, where he began to do all kinds of jobs: from cleaning boiler rooms to ripping wallpaper off the walls, all while he tried to continue programming and go to university.
At the age of 24, at the University of Standard, he created his first company, together with his brother and a friend. Named Zip2, it served to provide content to the media -it came to have The New York Times among its clients- and host a map and address directory service on its servers (something like an incipient Google Maps). After several years of service, they sold the company to Compaq for $307 million, marking their first major financial success.
Later Musk creates X.com, considered the first Internet bank. It had a service to make bank transfers via email, which facilitated a task that until then had to be done by going to bank offices.
In 1999 he bought the company Confinity, and one of its main products was PayPal, a service that allowed money to be sent between PDA users. Musk turns this service into the center of his business, to the point of establishing himself as an independent company.
In 2002, he sold it to eBay for $1.5 billion, and some of his colleagues in the company started their own successful Internet businesses. In fact, both LinkedIn and YouTube are founded by former PayPal employees.
With the money obtained, Musk financed the creation of other businesses, including the Tesla company, dedicated to the creation of electric cars; and SpaceX, with which he would fully enter the geospatial race and has even reached agreements with NASA to carry cargo to the International Space Station. Both companies were slow to “start up” and even in 2008, when the economic crash occurred, Musk was determined to throw in the towel.
However, the manager managed to lift both businesses and continue creating new projects. Solarcity is a solar energy company that has become the leading producer of this type of electricity in the United States. His Starlink project seeks to create a network of satellites that allow the Internet to be taken to all parts of the world, especially those that are difficult to access. Through Neuralink he experiments with the integration of microchips in the brain – for now, only in animals – which allows, for example, to play video games with the eyes.
Musk, after taking humans into outer space, is still determined to make space travel cheaper so that anyone can experience the sensation of seeing the planet Earth. He also considers it feasible to bombard Mars with nuclear bombs to create an ecosystem suitable for human life on the red planet.
These are not his greatest eccentricities. For example, he has created a flamethrower that he sells in the United States under the name “This-is-not-a-flamethrower” to get around a ban on calling a commercial product a “flamethrower” in the country. It has sold more than 20,000 units, although it is not without controversy, since people who have had problems handling the device, or even children who play with it, can be found on YouTube.
Experimenting with this flamethrower is something you can make the kids who come to Ad Astra (“Towards the stars”), the name given to the school created by Elon Musk and in which both his children and those of more than 50 StarX employees receive education. In it, children between the ages of 7 and 14 share a classroom – they are not divided by age – and do not receive subjects such as gymnastics, religion or languages (since Musk considers it silly to learn foreign languages).
Musk is constantly in the eye of the storm for making controversial statements or even influencing the valuation of cryptocurrencies (a single tweet from him mentioning a crypto can cause its value to skyrocket) or even the stock listing of companies. In fact, he was removed from the presidency of Tesla for three years for publishing a message in which “it occurred to him” to say that he would sell the company’s shares for $420 each and turn it into a private entity. This made the price of the shares rise and the SEC -the United States regulatory body- came to file a case against him.
Elon Musk is also one of the 10 tweeters with the most followers in the world. It has 88 million followers on the social network you now want to buy and a single tweet from you can receive thousands of interactions. In 2017 she already published a message that said “I Love Twitter”. Will he end up posting another one this year that marks “I own Twitter”?
I love Twitter
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 21, 2017