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Born in 1971 in Pretoria, South Africa, he ran away from his home when he was 17 to avoid his abusive father and make it big in the US with tremendous interest in science fiction and computers. With almost no money to have even a day's meal, he was supported by his Canadian relatives while he took odd jobs like cutting wood, cleaning boilers. Later he was admitted to a college in Ontario, Canada. During his school days he was extremely bullied and was even hospitalized once. In 1995 he started his first company, Zip2, an online city guide which was later sold to Compaq Computer for $22 million. In 1999 he started an online payment service, X.com which later evolved into PayPal which was acquired by eBay in 2002 for $1.5 billion. In 2002 and 2003 he launched two other companies, SpaceX (an aerospace manufacturer) and Tesla Motors (electric vehicle manufacturer) respectively. In March 2016, he filed for divorce for the second time from his actress wife Talulah Riley, while first being in 2012.

He is Elon Musk, 45, with a reported net worth of around $14 billion. His recent exploration is around a self-driving vehicle which might replace buses and other public transport.

This article first appeared in the Indian edition of Entrepreneur magazine (May 2016 Issue).

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