This biography of Elon Musk by Ashley Vance is an incredible read.
Many people know of Elon as the Founder of Tesla but not many know his story.
Elon was born in South Africa in a middle class family. He migrated to Canada in his late teens and paid for his studies doing odd end jobs.
He then went to University of Pennsylvania on a scholarship program and eventually moved to the West Coast.
At the time, the dot com boom was on. He used his coding skills to start a company called Zip2 – a primitive Google Maps meets Yelp. This was sold to Compaq for $307 Million.
Musk made $22 Million from the deal and used to start X.com which eventually became Paypal. eBay later acquired PayPal for $1.5 Billion giving Musk a gain of around $200 Million
Musk poured this money to form 3 companies-SpaceX, Tesla and Solar City (which was later sold to Tesla)
What I find striking about Musk is his vision and his determination to get his vision executed.
X.com was started to replace banks altogether.
SpaceX was born to fulfill Musk’s desire of making humans an “inter-planetary species”
Musk got involved with Tesla to ensure America forever gets rid of its addiction to oil and all the wars it does to protect the “oil economy”
The author does an excellent job chronicling Musk’s struggles and challenges as he formed and ran these companies.
The stories of each company is fascinating-the technological challenges, litigation, demanding Boards,office politics,media leaks, cash flow issues , customer pushbacks, govt regulations etc
The author writes in a very easy and gripping style which makes the book unputdownable.
After reading the book, one gets two feelings:
“What a Guy !”
“Only in America !”
Do buy this book to know how one guy is changing your future