BBC reporter taken to task over Elon Musk interview
Elon Musk’s wealth was reportedly slashed to the tune of £10.5bn ($13bn) after a SpaceX rocket exploded on Thursday while Twitter launched a controversial overhaul to the social media platform.
A SpaceX rockets burst into a fireball four minutes after takeoff on Thursday, startling spectators and briefly leaving Mr Musk redfaced.
On the same day, the entrepreneur watched on as his electric car business Tesla posted uninspiring first-quarter results that saw shares drop by 9.75 percent, with earnings down by more than a fifth.
This was followed by the backlash he experienced after removing “legacy” verified blue ticks for users on Twitter, with people now paying for the privilege to have one.
In total, the shake-ups have seen his earnings sink by $13billion – his biggest loss of the year so far, according to reports.
But such a huge loss will likely not be felt immediately by Mr Musk, as his net worth remains at around $164billion (£132bn), the Bloomberg Billionaire Index suggests.
This leaves him as the world’s second richest man, behind Bernard Arnault, the French luxury brand owner.
The SpaceX launch took place from Texas on Thursday, but exploded during the Starship rocket’s maiden flight.
The ship was uncrewed, and though no one was hurt by the explosion, Mr Musk will no doubt be disappointed at the results of the launch.
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Approximately two-to-three minutes into the flight, the Starship began tumbling out of control, and soon was destroyed.
But the episode didn’t leave Mr Musk undeterred. He told followers on Twitter that he would go again with another space launch in the coming months.
He added: “Congrats SpaceX team on an exciting test launch of Starship! Learned a lot for next test launch in a few months.”
Despite the crash, engineers working on the project hailed it as a success and said they would continue working via the mantra of “testing early and often”.
Mr Musk, though, will likely be concerned about Tesla’s poor quarterly performance. He caused concern among analysts when he discussed the findings, which saw the company earn a net income of $2.5billion (£2.02bn) in its first quarter.
That was a decline of 24 percent from the previous year. He said in a report: “We’ve taken a view that pushing for higher volumes and a larger fleet is the right choice here, versus a lower volume and higher margin.”
And at Twitter he has received criticism for his removal of blue ticks, meaning some accounts have lost their verification. This has included megastars such as Oprah Winfrey, Justin Bieber and Kim Kardashian.
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