Entrepreneur, billionaire, engineer, and above all visionary, innovator, and inventor – Elon Musk from South Africa is changing the world with his ideas. In addition, he has proven to all ordinary people that following your dreams can pay off, and when it’s all under control, you can reach the stars.

Life wasn’t always easy

Elon fell for computers and modern technology in his childhood. By the age of 12 he had already programmed his first computer game, so it was no surprise that he decided to study physics and economics. He continued on to study for a PhD, but dropped it after two days, apparently to have time to start a business. Before he managed to close his first real deal, he earned money by cleaning and survived on one dollar a day during his studies. After that, however, he designed the Zip2 portal and the internet payment system PayPal, which brought the necessary capital for further projects.

A man of many faces

After successfully selling PayPal, Musk continued to turn his ideas into reality, and there were more than just a few. There is, for example, SpaceX, the company focusing on research and flights to space; Tesla, the automobile manufacturer specializing in electric cars; Hyperloop, the company that develops super-fast transport using pods; and lastly OpenAL, a non-profit organization focused on research into artificial intelligence and the threats it may bring to humanity.

Life is about the ups and downs

Elon himself has mentioned that things haven’t always gone his way. His car factory was facing bankruptcy several times and the SpaceX flights were not able to take off successfully at first. During the hard times, he had to subsidize his business from his own money, and often went into the red. Musk however doesn’t see that as a defeat, but as an incentive for greater efforts and lessons learned for the future.

Money comes last

One would think that he only does it for the money… but it’s not entirely true. Musk gets one dollar a year for leading his Tesla automotive business. He is rated as 83rd most wealthy man on Earth. The more money he has, the more he invests in things that are beneficial for mankind. We might move to Mars thanks to him one day, as he has always dreamed.

Text: Markéta Veselá / Foto: teslamagazin.sk