Elon Reeve Musk is a South African-born Canadian American business magnate, investor, engineer and inventor. He is the founder, CEO, and lead designer of SpaceX; co-founder, CEO, and product architect of Tesla, Inc.; and chairman of SolarCity. In December 2016, he was ranked 21st on the Forbes list of The World's Most Powerful People. As of February 2018, he has a net worth of $20.1 billion and is listed by Forbes as the 53rd richest person in the world.
Born in Pretoria, Musk taught himself computer programming at the age of 12. He moved to Canada when he was 17 to attend Queen's University. He transferred to the University of Pennsylvania two years later, where he received a degree in physics from the College of Arts and Sciences and an economics degree from the Wharton School. He began a PhD in applied physics and material sciences at Stanford University in 1995 but dropped out within a month to pursue an entrepreneurial career. He subsequently co-founded Zip2, a web software company, which was acquired by Compaq for $340 million in 1999. Musk then founded X.com, an online payment company. It merged with Confinity in 2000 and became PayPal, which was bought by eBay for $1.5 billion in October 2002.