You can’t go far in the realm of tech news, or even popular celebrity news without coming across Elon Musk. The South African born entrepreneur has his name regularly splashed across a plethora of newspapers, and not just for his numerous businesses, but his pretty public personal life often makes the news cycles too.
The word ‘entrepreneur’ has its origins in 13th century France, it means ‘to undertake’ or ‘to do something’ in the context of business ventures, and Elon Musk has definitely done plenty of that.
Born in 1971 to parents Errol and Maye Musk, it can be fairly assumed that Elon must have taken somewhat of an interest in his dad’s work as an engineer. From being super young he showed promise in fields he later on excelled in in business. When he was just twelve years old, Musk developed a computer game and even managed to sell it to a magazine focused all around computers.
After getting a Canadian passport through his Canadian mother, Musk moved there in 1988, avoiding the compulsory military duty in South Africa, and by extension avoiding supporting the apartheid era looming there at the time. Canada also eventually acted as a stepping stone to the US, which offered more opportunities for Musk in business than ever before.
His new brand ‘X’ replacing the iconic twitter branding is not the first time Musk has run a company named ‘X’. Before merging with software company ‘Confinity’ just a year after it started, ‘x.com’ was the venture that merged into the monumentally successful ‘Paypal’.
Despite once being called ‘the worst business ideas of 1999’, Paypal was sold to Ebay in 2002 for a whopping $1.5 billion stock deal, and they kept hold of it until 2015, after which they converted it into a separate entity.
Frustrated with the lack of progress from the likes of NASA, and strung with the belief that settling on multiple planets is in humanity’s future, Musk created SpaceX. SpaceX is a private company with the goal of space exploration, and especially working towards the colonisation of one of our closest neighbouring planets, Mars.
Famous for having reusable rockets, SpaceX has broken numerous records, including being the first private company to send a craft to the International Space Station, and also to send astronauts into orbit, beating the likes of Virgin, founded by Richard Branson.
The company also put considerable resources into developing a constellation of satellites called Starlink, offering the supply of commercial internet service all around the world. Use of the Starlink was provided by Musk to aid Ukraine and its military operations while under attack from Russia.
Perhaps his most known business venture of them all, in 2004 he became one of the major funders of Tesla, a company founded by two other men a couple of years earlier. Elon Musk invested $6.5 million in the company, however he is more than just the face or an investor of Telas, he eventually took a pretty active role in the company, helping develop it into the household name it is today.
It’s clear Musk takes significant initiatives to keep his companies ahead when it comes to technological advancements, and his work with Tesla is no different. In the past couple of years, the company has been working to accept various forms of crypto payments. Although Dogecoin is currently the only accepted form of crypto currency Tesla takes, they are working towards accepting Bitcoin worldwide, an option that was previously only used in the US before being halted in 2021.
Cryptocurrency is an online digital currency famed for its transparency and versatility due to it not being centralised around any one bank or country. It can be incredibly useful in situations like international transfers, as well as partaking in crypto gambling, to make transparent transactions while receiving cryptocurrency rewards.
Musk surprised a lot of social media users when he decided to purchase Twitter for $44 billion, after buying up enough stock to make him a majority shareholder in early 2022. Midway through 2023, Musk and the company officially announced the rebrand to ‘X’ which received mixed reviews off the bat from experienced tweeters.
Although it remains to be seen if this new brand will actually be able to replace the iconic twitter, it certainly is taking the company in a new direction.
Elon Musk’s dating life has become as infamous as his business ventures in recent years.
With a few somewhat high profile marriages to on and off flame Talulah Riley, Musk has had multiple public relationships, including one with musical artist Grimes, resulting in a child that took the world by storm before they were even born with their name ‘X Æ A-12’. The child was later renamed ‘X Æ A-Xii’ due to restrictions on numbers in names. It’s rumoured the name, or at least a nickname version is pronounced ‘Ash’.