Elon Musk’s Inspiring Journey from PayPal to Tesla and now Twitter

Ritika Deshpande

Elon Musk Inspiring Success Story

Meet the legendary billionaire, Elon Musk- the richest man on Earth, and someone who truly needs no introduction. 

Many of us, after hearing the word Elon Musk, immediately think of the man behind Tesla. And yes, that would be completely justified as is it one of, if not the biggest car companies on the entire planet.

He is known as a business magnate, a person who has gained an insane amount of wealth by owning multiple companies, so he is a man behind many such flourishing endeavors.

Biography of Elon Musk

Elon Reeve Musk was born on 28 June 1971 in Pretoria, South Africa into a wealthy family. He attended the University of Pretoria for his high school education. He then got his BSc degree in physics from the University of Pennsylvania.

He also has a BA degree in economics from the Wharton School, Philadelphia. Later in 1995, he moved to California to pursue a doctoral degree in physics from the prestigious Stanford University but dropped out after just two days of attending it to satisfy his business-oriented mind.

This was the beginning of Zip2, his first venture. He along with his brother worked incredibly hard for their first company. They even rented out a workspace and poured their heart and soul into their work. 

Entrepreneurial Journey of Elon Musk

To sum up his incredible ventures in a few words is next to impossible. But we’ll surely give it a go.

Elon Musk founded his first company by the name of Zip2 in 1995 along with his brother Kimbal Musk and a friend. Zip2 was a company made to provide and licensed online city guide software to newspapers. It was eventually sold for $307 million in 1999, and Elon earned $22 million for his 7% share of the company when he was just 27 years old.

In 1999, he launched another company called X.com with three other co-founders, and it served as an online payment service platform. In 2001, it was renamed to be called PayPal, with which we all are familiar.

This makes Elon Musk one of the founders of PayPal! However, building PayPal was a rocky journey. It was once called one of the worst business ideas of 1999 and Elon was dethroned from his position as the CEO due to technical issues and the lack of a cohesive business model. 

Space Exploration Technologies Corp. abbreviated as SpaceX is a spacecraft engineering company. This was another venture launched by him on 14th March 2002 with a fantastic goal of reducing space transportation costs and revolutionizing the aerospace industry and making affordable spaceflight a reality.

Elon continues being the CEO of SpaceX to date. “You want to wake up in the morning and think the future is going to be great – and that’s what being a spacefaring civilization is all about. It’s about believing in the future and thinking that the future will be better than the past. And I can’t think of anything more exciting than going out there and being among the stars,” he comments about SpaceX.

Under SpaceX, he’s also been a part of creating an organization called Starlink– the World’s most advanced broadband satellite internet. It provides satellite internet access to over 40 countries. Its official website says ‘Starlink is the world’s first and largest satellite constellation using a low Earth orbit to deliver broadband internet capable of supporting streaming, online gaming, video calls and more. It delivers high-speed, low-latency internet to users all over the world.’ 

The Musk Foundation

It is a non-profit organization founded in 2002 by Elon and his brother. This organization supports charitable activities in order to serve the common good.

He has over the years donated eight figures to cities and local schools near his South Texas spaceport. He also has donated $100 million to fight climate change and millions of dollars to a pair of Covid-19 researchers.

He also donated a whopping amount of $5.7 billion of his Tesla shares to charity in 2021.

Moving on to Tesla Electric Cars

The company behind his riches, Tesla is an American multinational automotive and clean energy company founded by Elon and four others in 2004. It is headquartered in Austin, Texas.

Elon Musk is the CEO and product architect of Tesla. Tesla designs and manufactures electric vehicles (electric cars and trucks), battery energy storage, solar panels, solar roof tiles, and other such products.

It is one of the best and biggest electric vehicle companies on the planet. The company’s name serves as a tribute to inventor and electrical engineer Nikola Tesla. 

Buying Twitter and Becoming its CEO

Elon Musk recently took over Twitter and became the owner and CEO of one of the most influential social media platforms on 28th October 2022 after acquiring it for $44 Billion.

Being the CEO of Twitter, it is obvious that he is indeed very active on the platform. His tweets are a sweet mix

Some of the other companies founded by him are OpenAI, The Boring Company, Neuralink, etc.

Need I go on any further? 

Setbacks

In response to a pretty hateful Twitter comment he received about his privileged upbringing, Elon Musk stated that he had about $100,000 in student debt after college and that he couldn’t even afford a second PC. 

When we started Tesla, I thought maybe our chance of success was 10%” 

In 2008, his two companies SpaceX and Tesla were on the verge of bankruptcy and as a result, he himself had to bankrupt to prevent them from impoverishing and keep them running.

Advice to Future Entrepreneurs

“One of the mistakes people generally make and I’m guilty of it too is wishful thinking. You know, like you want something to be true even if it isn’t true. So you ignore the real truth because of what you want to be true”

“Even if you are the best of the best there is always a chance of failure. So I think it’s important to really like whatever you’re doing.”

“I would encourage you to take risks now. Do something BOLD. You won’t regret it.

“There are a lot of terrible things happening all over the world all the time. But life cannot just be about solving one miserable problem after another. It can’t be the only thing. There need to be things that inspire you, that make you glad to wake up in the morning and be part of humanity.”

Elon is the kind of role-model everyone is desperately in need of in today’s world of superficiality and no word I write here can do justice to how powerful of an entrepreneur he is.

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