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Background

Ol' Musky was born and then after he was born, he created some visionary companies. He started landing rockets at the age of 8 and at 16 he went to Mars.
Nowadays he lives in Mars with his wife and 5 children. He expected no to die on impact and it did not happen.
He deserves an entire wiki just for him.

Education

Elon studied Physics at Queen's University for 2 years, and then transferred to the University of Pennsylvania where received a BA in Physics and a BA in Economics from the Wharton School. He later enrolled a PhD program at Stanford University, but dropped out on the first day of class to pursue his personal ventures.

Early Life Ventures


Party House

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While studying at the University of Pennsylvania Elon rented out a large house with friend Adeo Rossi and hosted parties where they charged $5 a person and would have up to 500 people attend. During the parties however Elon could often be found in his room playing video games or complaining about the noise hindering his studies as he saw the parties as purely a "business venture."

Customer Problem

College students were looking to find

Customer Segmentation

Students in Philadelphia who were looking to attend university parties

Value Proposition

A fun time with peers at a large house with people of the same age

Customer Discovery

Asking around about parties at school and finding a lack of large easy to access parties

MVP - Zip2

Summer 1995

During the summer after his university studies Elon had developed a software that allowed people to keep maps and directions on the internet, and allowed online manipulation of content such as people and business directories.

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Customer Problem

In the early days of the internet directories for ads, maps, and stores were still not digitized.

Customer Segmentation

Tech savvy residents of the bay area who were looking for a better alternative to a physical yellow pages book.

Value Proposition

Convenient and universal access to businesses in the area.

Customer Discovery

Elon and his brother went door to door with a small sales team in the Bay Area and pitched the idea of the product to find their first few customers.

Leap to Faith

The internet was still a new concept at the time and people and businesses had already instilled habits for directories and did not trust this new medium to make them money, Elon however believed that the value the customers saw in using internet services would overcome that obstacles and make businesses join.

MVP - X.com #1


The first MVP for x.com was just a simple landing page that gave a quick explanation of the product and asked interested users to give their emails to be contacted at a later date about product developments.

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Customer Problem

Access to financial institutions was not still accessible on the internet and people did not trust the internet.

Customer Segmentation

Small businesses that required faster business transactions.

Value Proposition

Easy at home access to financial institutions.

Customer Discovery

x.com's first website gave a quick intro of the idea and allowed users to input their email to keep in touch about the company's development.

Leap to Faith

Financial info had never been placed on the internet for people before, but based on his discovery of customers' pains Elon believed that once trust was established people would love the value.


MVP - X.com #2


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Customer Problem


Customer Segmentation


Value Proposition


Customer Discovery


MVP - SpaceX


Elon went to Russia 3 times to speak to the government in the hope of buying used Soviet era rockets to start his business off, but later found out that no one had taken him seriously and was later laughed out of every meeting. On the plane ride back he made an excel document outlining all the costs required to make his own rocket from scratch and he realized it would actually be cheaper to do it all on his own. He also read a a huge variety books on physics and the science of rockets when starting his company.

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Customer Problem

Sending rockets to Space for both developed and developing countries was extremely expensive and wasteful.

Customer Segmentation

US government and small businesses looking to send satellites into orbit.

Value Proposition

Making space accessible to more people than ever before.

Customer Discovery

Elon used his network at the US government and asked retired air force general about the issues NASA faced with regards to cost cuts.

Leap to Faith

No private company had attempted to do vertical integration of rockery equipment before, but based on his forecasting and conversation with businesses and government Elon believed that if success of technology was guaranteed, SpaceX would be the #1 choice for everyone to come to.

MVP - Electric Car Idea


Before Tesla was founded, its co-founder JB Straubel modded his 1984 Porsche 911 with an electric engine and a battery pack that the car would tow behind it. He used this car as his daily driver to test out his technology for an electric engine and battery and how it would work in real life use.

Unknown

Customer Problem

Existing environmental friendly cars were expensive and had not expanded past the niche rich group of customers who were passionate about climate change.

Customer Segmentation

Investors and early customers were skeptical about the feasibility of electric and their ability to be comparable to gas cars.

Value Proposition

Proof of concept of the technology and demonstrating viability of technology on an already existing and familiar car.

Customer Discovery

JB Straubel drove the car around the Bay Area and to work, which evoked interest among his coworkers into the idea for a new type of electric car.

Leap to Faith



MVP - AC Propulsion tzero


The tzero was developed by the AC propulsion team at Stanford as a concept high-speed electric car to demonstrate the viability of electric motors and battery technology.

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Customer Problem

Electric cars were often slow, unattractive, and very rarely purely electric and had to rely on hybrid engines which made them unattractive to the mass market.

Customer Segmentation

The tzero was used by Elon Musk to demonstrate to venture capitalists that Tesla's ideas were feasible technologically.

Value Proposition

A high speed and attractive electric car.

Customer Discovery

Elon Musk would drive the car to VC meetings and allow the VCs to drive the car around and test it themselves to see the value in the idea.

Leap to Faith

The Tesla tam had still not personally a made any products of their own, but they believed that this concept car demonstrated every value they were hoping to deliver with their production car and

MVP - Electric Mercedes and Batteries


Tesla was facing financial troubles and was having a hard time developing their own car, so they chose to buy a Mercedes CLS and gut out the engine and fuel tank of the car and replace it with an electric engine and a battery pack.

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Customer Problem

Battery technology available to car manufactures was outdated and weak.

Customer Segmentation

The Tesla team modded a Mercedes CLS with an electric engine and a Tesla battery pack and showed it to Mercedes.

Value Proposition

Inserting electric car technology into an existing best-selling vehicle while retaining all functions and aesthetics.

Customer Discovery

In a funding meeting the Tesla team showed the car to Mercedes which attracted their interest and lead to a 10% investment into Tesla.

Leap to Faith

Based on discoveries about the car industry Elon believed that the demand existed for improved and cheaper battery technology, so he took the leap on that demand and made the product to address it.