Elon Musk became the richest man in the world, reaching a fortune of US$210.2 billion (R$1.04 trillion). According to the Forbes ranking, the owner of Space X could become the first trillionaire of the world in 10 years. With this, Elon Musk is ahead of big names like Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos and Bernard Arnault.
See also: See how a brain chip developed by Elon Musk’s company will work
Owner of six companies, Musk announced this week the first implant of the Neuralink brain chip in a human being. The device is intended to allow people with paralysis to control external devices with just their thoughts. The company was authorized in 2023 to test chips on humans, however it did not provide further details on human testing.
Where does Elon Musk’s wealth come from?
Elon Musk is a member of a millionaire family from Pretoria, South Africa. Musk’s father, Errol Musk, owned emerald mines in the country. On the other hand, Elon Musk taught himself programming when he was still a child. At age 12, he closed his first deal by writing video game code and selling it to PC and Office Technology magazine for US$500.
At age 17, Musk moved to Canada and began studying at Queen’s University. At the time, he sold computer parts and complete computers to other students. However, two years later, he transferred to the University of Pennsylvania in the United States, where he completed courses in economics and physics.
Elon Musk got into business in 1995 when he and his brother Kimbal created Zip2, city guide software for newspapers. The company was started with US$28,000 borrowed from his father. Four years after the company launched, the brothers sold Zip2 for $307 million. Of this total, Musk kept US$22 million.
Space X, Tesla and others
With the money acquired from the sale of Zip2, Elon co-founded an online payments service: X.com. The company merged with its main competitor, creating PayPal, with Musk being the majority shareholder. In 2002, PayPal was sold to eBay, which yielded US$180 million in profit for Elon Musk. At just 31 years old, he already had a net worth of US$165 million.
In 2002, SpaceX was created, in addition to Tesla in 2003. Currently, the rocket company is worth almost US$ 150 billion, while Tesla is the first North American automaker to have its shares traded on the stock exchange since Ford. However, the title of richest man in the world came in 2022, when Tesla shares saw huge growth.
Finally, the entrepreneur co-founded six companies, co-founding SolarCity, one of the main suppliers of solar energy systems. Musk’s last acquisition happened in April 2022, when he acquired Twitter. For $44 billion, he became the owner of Twitter and changed the name of the social network to the name of one of his former companies: X.