By the age of 12 Elon Musk had sold his first commercial software, a space game called Blaster. Sixteen years later he sold his first company, Zip2, to Compaq's Alta Vista division for $341 million in cash and stock. His next act was as co-founder of PayPal, which was acquired by eBay for $1.5 billion in stock in 2002.
Musk then turned his energy toward two notable new ventures: SpaceX, developer and manufacturer of space launch vehicles, and Tesla Motors, developer of high-end electric automobiles - both of which were started in a downturn. What makes this visionary entrepreneur tick?
Musk speaks with Michael Malone about innovation for the future's sake, business strategies to get there, how to make order out of chaos along the way, and more.
Elon Musk is an entrepreneur and a co-founder of SpaceX. He was an early investor in PayPal. He is chairman of Tesla Motors and SolarCity.
Battery-powered motor vehicle. Originating in the 1880s, electric cars were used for private passenger, truck, and bus transportation in cities, where their low speeds and limited battery range were not drawbacks, and the cars became popular for their quietness and low maintenance costs. Until 1920 they were competitive with gasoline-fueled cars; they became less so after the electric self-starter made gasoline-powered cars more attractive and mass production made them cheaper to produce. In Europe electric vehicles have been used as short-range delivery vans. Renewed interest in electric cars beginning in the 1970s, spurred especially by new consciousness of foreign oil dependency and environmental concern, led to improvements in speed and range. Recent laws, particularly in California, have mandated commercial production. Hybrid cars employing both electric and internal combustion engines and providing the best features of both technologies, have recently become commercially available. Experimental vehicles have used solar fuel cells.
In the Tesla car will people be protected from radiation. Is this something that is checked since it will be electromagnetic-chemical beings in the car?
Tesla was taken advantage of which is sad. Wishing your battery operated car much success, and may great advancement be made in it.
We are being irradiated on earth in many ways without going to space yet. I think if we are to go to Mars we have to acknowledge EMRadiation, and get out of the lab and go to where the problems are concerning radiation to understand it better, and know how to protect living things from it.
Very interesting with what was talked about, and so varied. Today though living on $1.00 a day would be very difficult, as one orange usually cost $1.00. Thank you for sharing Elon Musk. Please advise Mr. Malone to at least use a computer pad as he is cooking his personal area it seems, and being badly irradiated, and radiation is cumulative.
This was excellent. Elon is a class act with a wonderful array of energy flowing around him. Other entrepreneurs should be appreciative of his successes and his ability to maintain such a humble character. Elon's passion is engineering, not speaking publicly. Nevertheless, this interview was still a real delight to watch. Thanks Churchill Club.
This is analogous to the Kennedy-Nixon debate in the sense that Wagoner deals with the media constantly and Musk... well he has some communication skills to improve upon. But let us look at this a different way. Wagoner was a Harvard grad in Economics, a financial analyst at GM and now GM CEO. GM has lost billions and billions under Wagoner's leadership. He walks away with millions of dollars while his average worker gets tossed under the bus (probably made by GM). Elon Musk on the other hand, is a Physics and Economics major from U Penn and Stanford. He is the founder of at least a couple of technology oriented startups before Tesla.
I have to say that an hour of Musk's stumbling conversation is worth more than ten minutes of Wagoner's smooth talking. Another way to look at this is that GM will build something out of what is already being produced, yet Tesla is starting from scratch...
I must agree with jay here. This was an hour long advertisement for tesla, followed by a hokey, over-done ask-answer with the moderator. Musk is brilliant for sure, but the very little of any real value was covered - save for some of the questions (and Musk's answers) near the end.
One of the gems: "Why is multi-planetary life important?" Musk's answer - paraphrased: "Well it shouldn't command less money than cosmetics right?"