Tech entrepreneur Musk’s fortune briefly surpasses $100bn amidst a fivefold increase in the share price of electric carmaker Tesla so far this year
Elon Musk’s net worth briefly surpassed $100 billion (£75bn) on Friday, according to Forbes’ real-time billionaires list, making the tech entrepreneur the world’s fifth centibillionaire.
The milestone arrives amidst a sharp rise in the share price of Musk’s electric car company Tesla so far this year, and a Tesla stock split that occurred on Friday.
A large portion of Musk’s fortune comes from his 21 percent stake in Tesla, according to Forbes, and he also heads rocket company SpaceX and brain-machine interface company Neuralink.
Tesla shares have risen fivefold this year, and rose again on Thursday ahead of a five-for-one stock split that took place on Friday.
The shares rose again on Friday, putting Musk briefly over the $100bn mark, before closing about 1 percent down at $2,213.
Tesla went public in 2010 at an initial share price of $17.
Musk is the world’s fifth-richest person, ahead of Warren Buffett and behind Mark Zuckerberg, but his fortune is only half that of Jeff Bezos’ $200bn.
Musk’s fortune has quadrupled since mid-March, when he ranked No. 31 on Forbes’ billionaires list with $24.6bn. Tesla’s shares have risen 35 percent since Tesla announced the stock split on 11 August.
Tesla became the world’s most valuable carmaker by market capitalisation on 1 July when it surpassed Toyota.
The carmaker has not yet turned a profit, but some industry watchers believe it stands to benefit from an increase in demand for electric vehicles.
In May Tesla was reported to be working on a “million-mile” battery with lower cost and longer life. The company is planning a “Battery Day” in September to give more details on its battery research.
The meteoric rise in Tesla’s share price this year has been a cause of controversy for some – not least Musk himself.
In May Musk commented on Twitter that Tesla’s share price was “too high”, causing their value to briefly plummet.
Other companies Musk has founded include The Boring Company, which aims to make tunnels beneath city streets for electric public transportation systems.