If you look at Elon Musk, the brilliance of who he is embodies what a true entrepreneur is. Having started companies like Paypal, x.com, SpaceX, Tesla Motors, Solarcity, Open AI, and Hyperloop, his name is behind some of the biggest tech companies in Silicon Valley and in the world. One of the biggest things about Elon Musk though is his utmost creativity. The company he created that pre succeeded Paypal was Zip2. Zip2 ended up being a major software company during the dotcom boom and was sold to Compaq for $34 million dollars, of which Musk received $22 million from a 7% share in stock options.
Paypal became his next venture which was started from $10 million dollars of what Musk made from Zip2. The whole purpose of Paypal was to become this revolutionary new electronic payment platform that you can link to your credit card or bank account to make online purchases. It was basically like a transaction protocol for digitized shopping. However, you would obviously need a bank or credit card since it was fiat based. At its infancy, Paypal is still a major player in the digital transactions industry. The fact that eBay was one of the first services to use it, made it gain much larger market acceptance. In October 22nd, eBay ultimately acquired Paypal.
Now the company that followed Paypal was SpaceX. Elon Musk had this revolutionary vision that one-day people could colonize Mars. Though this is yet to fully happen, SpaceX is mostly out competing for NASA right now. He was originally going to get old space crafts from the Russians, however, the $8 million/rocket was too expensive for him. Musk ultimately ended up starting SpaceX technologies from $100 million of his early ventures and the rest was history. Right now he is planning to dramatically cut costs of space exploration to 10% and is even doing some work that NASA contracted to his company.
Musk was ultimately going to fail at this venture but decided to keep on trying. This is why SpaceX was successful. You have a guy who was offered too expensive spacecraft, pitched to multiple firms, and previously failed test launches. Most people who have quit or said it was absolutely uninvestable as a venture. The fact that Elon Musk didn’t give up on his dream is what made SpaceX the giant corporate entity it is today.
Next is obviously going to be Tesla Motors. Elon Musk wasn’t the first to build electric cars. The technology was already out there. However, he was one of the first to reduce costs where the middle-upper class can easily afford it. He now has Tesla's now ranging at the $24k to $35k price as well with the Model S. This was substantially lower than when they were around the $65k+ range in the beginning. It was American ingenuity and paying attention to detail that he was able to get it to a much lower cost than it was before. He even move on to starting another goal for transportation later on with leads us to his separate Hyperloop venture.
Elon Musk may be a manager. He may have envisioned lots of these products and how to manage numerous managers or supervisors to get where he was. However, he understands and knows the technology. He understands the market he is coming in. Elon Musk knows how to analyze liability, not quit and be great at letting other people see his vision. The fact that Elon Musk was able to accomplish so much the past two decades shows that he is a serial entrepreneur. He set up trusts, he managed asset allocation, he have found co-founders in the past or researched his target audience. Elon musk certainly have been through all the steps of being an entrepreneur.