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If You’re Wondering How Elon Musk Grew his Net Worth while Tesla Sank Deeper into Debt; You’re Not Alone

Tesla co-founded Zip2, a web software company, taken over by Compaq in 1999 for approximately $340 million. Musk then founded an online bank called X.com, which joined Confinity in the year 2000 and became PayPal, and was bought by eBay for $1.5 billion in 2002. Musk  co-founded Tesla and Solar City, a renewable energy company and then founded SpaceX. That’s a long list of achievements right there!

Elon Musk is the man responsible for the electric car revolution. Thanks to Tesla, supercars are eco-friendly and accessible to the masses when compared to the competitors. Thanks to bizarre antics and ambitious ideas, the star businessman has a huge fan-base, but too many serious controversies relating to his behavior on social media brought about his unfortunate downfall. Tesla’s stocks collapsed in 2018 when Musk failed to make the carmaker private. Investors were disturbed by Musk’s explosive NYT Interview which triggered a massive turnover in Tesla, at the executive level. Despite such hurdles, financial experts estimate Elon Musk’s net worth as exceeding the combined income of the 65 highest-paid CEOs in the United States. Let’s try and unravel how much Musk actually made in 2018.

NYT’s Report

New York Times recently published a list of 200 CEOs of prestigious U.S. traded companies and their annual salaries. As per the study, Tesla’s CEO, Elon Musk, made a staggering $2.3 billion in 2018 despite not taking home a single paycheck from the company ever since it started. Tesla says that he would take a salary when Tesla reached a market cap of $100 billion. According to the NYT report, Musk accumulated his wealth from Tesla’s stocks and shares, despite the recent downturn, following the recent Tesla controversies. Trailing way behind him was Discovery’s David M. Zaslav, who made $129 million last year.

A Massive Disparity

Not only is Musk’s compensation much higher than that of other top CEOs in the country, the report revealed that his compensation package of $2.3 billion exceeded the combined salaries of 200 CEOs! Tesla reveals that the Board approved Musk’s compensation package in March 2018. If Musk achieves the new targets set for Tesla, especially when it comes to market capitalization, Musk then unlocks a particular compensation package.

Tesla Clarifies

Meanwhile, it was elucidated that Musk’s compensation was not only in Tesla’s stocks. According to the carmaker, Musk declined any monetary compensation, cash bonuses or equity from his shares in 2018. Tesla later released a statement refuting NYT’s claims confirming that Musk made $0 from the company last year and the only compensation acceptable is a performance award after doubling Tesla’s market cap. This goal motivates Musk for ensuring Tesla’s long-term success instead of personal gains.

Other Top CEOs on the List

The other highly-paid CEOs in the list includes Nikesh Arora of Palo Alto Networks with $125 million net worth. Landing the fourth and fifth spots jointly are Oracle’s Mark V. Hurd and Safra A. Catz with $108 million each. John J. Legere also earned an astounding $67 million from his company, T-Mobile. Robert A. Iger of Walt Disney took home a $66-million paycheck. Landing the 8th spots is James Heppelmann from PTC with $50 million followed by Fabrizio Freda from ESTÉE LAUDER with $48 million and Vivek Shah from J2 Global at $45 million.

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