Recently, Tesla earned the distinction of being the most valuable US Auto-maker in history. Reaching a record high market value of 86.5 billion dollars, a company that started in 2003, beating out long term companies like Ford and GM by a good 10 to 20 billion, is quite a surprise.
Except you’ve been living under a rock, chances are, you you’ve heard of Elon Musk. When it comes to billionaires who have been in the spotlight, he is one of them. And with a net worth of around $29 billion he is one of the wealthiest people out there, but could he be wealthier? Could he dethrone Jeff Bezos to become the richest man on the planet? Could he even go as far as to become the world’s first trillionaire? Today let’s take a look on how wealthy Elon Musk actually could become. First, let’s take a look at his background.
Born in South Africa, Elon was pretty much said to be a tech nerd, he taught himself to code and he sold his first bit of video game code (called Blastar) at the age of 12. In middle school and high school, he was bullied by people who would most likely feel stupid about that right now. I mean, there is saying that success is the sweetest revenge. Elon went on to go to college in Canada then in United States where he paid for his rent by converting his college apartment into a nightclub and charging 5 bucks ahead. Surprising right? Off course. As a matter of fact he once took a job as a boiler room cleaner at lumber mill. He also sold computer parts and full PCs out of his dorm room to earn extra cash. Entrepreneurs come in all forms, don’t they?
After earning his bachelor’s degree in physics and economics, he went on to start a business called Zip2. Four years later, in 1999, Zip2 was sold for 307 million dollars, earning Elon Musk 22 Million dollars all on his own. Let’s be honest here, 22 Million for a 28 year old, isn’t too bad.
While a lot of people would take that money and spend it extravagantly, Elon had a bit more business in mind. He invested the money in X.com, an online banking service that was eventually bought out by PayPal. His earnings from that little journey was about a 180 million dollars. Now we know how he got the money to start up the businesses he owns today. But how much how those company earning him and how much will they go on to earn.
Tesla, being one of those companies, with a market value 86.5 billion dollars, makes it clear that the company is doing very much okay. Elon owns about 38.6 million shares in Tesla, but in an announcement in 2018, Tesla announced it won’t be paying Elon a dime for the next ten years under a twelve step performance plan. If Tesla manages to hit all twelve performance milestones, reaching a market value of about 650 billion dollars, Elon would own 184 billion dollar worth of Tesla stock alone, making him more wealthy than Jeff Bezos with just his Tesla stock.
But 184 billion dollar in Tesla stock doesn’t exactly make a trillionaire right? Lucky for Elon Musk, he has got few other companies in other ventures. Space X is one of Elon’s well-known business ventures, they do a lot of work building insane rocket engines, developing space flight vehicles, scaring the entire city of Los-Angelis with their launches. Aero-space companies rank up some out of this world money with an estimated value of 33.3 billion dollars. Space X is no different. However, it’s their plan for the future that really set them apart, with the intension to colonize Mars, create private affordable space flight and resume American astronaut space flight. It seems they a lot on their plate.
But it’s their Star-link program that is expected to really do bring in the money. Star-link, is a satellite initiative, intending to provide high speed and low cost internet across the globe. But how much is it going to be worth? A recent analysis by Morgan Stanley expects Star-link to blast Space X’s value to 120billion dollars within the next couple of years earning an additional 30-50 billion dollars annually. Once all twelve thousands satellites are up and providing internet to countries, companies, and the United State government, it’s hard to say how high this company’s market value would skyrocket, and that’s just from the Star-link program alone. Since Elon owns 54% of Space X’s stock, he is looking at a pretty huge amount of money going into his net worth. As of now, Space X is private and if they ever switch to public as Elon has stated they are planning to, their market value could drastically increase.
So right now we have a rough estimate of 184 billion and 120 billion with an addition 30-50 billion a year. But if you are Elon, Space X and Tesla can’t be the only company you own right? I mean that will just be ‘Boring’.
That’s right, The Boring company. This is company digs tunnels for transportation and 90% of this company is owned by Elon Musk with another 6% owned by Space X. The Boring Company plans to create an underground high speed transportation tunnel that runs from Los-Angelis to Seattle and his accessible only by Tesla and other electronic vehicles. The entire system is estimated to earn at least $5 for every $1 spent, and with Elon Musk owning 90% equity, that’s a lot of profit once the system is approved and in use.
As if these companies aren’t enough, Elon musk is also the majority owner of Neuralink, a brain computer interface program. No word has really come out about the company’s profit and no one really knows what they are working on. But it seems like some sci-fi movie material should be expected from them soon.
Neuralink shares it’s building with OpenAI, another company founded by Elon Musk. The company is aimed at creating friendly helpful AI (artificial Intelligence). That is, creating AI that won’t cause a robot uprising.
Well there you have it, the businesses owned and operated by Elon Musk. Though it is tough to say how much this companies are going earn him, but it seems like that trillion dollar mark isn’t too far off. Right now, all we can say is ‘time will tell’.