Nikola Tesla- The Scientist Who Could’ve Been a Billionaire.
Nikola Tesla, a 28-year-old Serbian innovator, immigrated from Paris to America in 1884, possessing a recommendation letter written to one of the most famous businessmen in America, Thomas Edison. The two geniuses started off a partnership until they turned into rivals, which brought off an electric revolution in the world. Tesla of course, gained fame, being unbeatable for more than 100 years.
Tesla’s creation brought him fame and trust, he was so prosperous, bringing the point where his royalty payments of Alternating Current were worth millions of dollars. He could easily have become the first billionaire if only he was as good of a capitalist.
Tesla’s First Job
The 28-year-old got his first job at Edison General Electric, where he earned 18$ per week. Thomas Edison offered a $50,0000 bonus, daring Nikola to design the Direct Current again with improvement, at which he triumphantly succeeded within two months. Seeing his spirit, Edison refused to pay him the bonus, however, Tesla did receive an increase of $10, after which Tesla quit the job.
Thomas vs Edison
In 1880, when no home dreamt of electricity, Thomas Edison was the first to pave the hope of light, establishing his company, Edison General Electric inventing Direct Current(DC).
On the contrary, in 1887, in the month of April, Tesla founded his company, Tesla Electric Company, where he brought forward his invention which was the most remarkable of all TheAlternating Current (AC)- it proved to be a thousand times better than DC current, in efficiency as well as cost.
As the word spread, Tesla was approached by Westinghouse Electric & Manufacturing Company and was offered an immense agreement to license his technology. 1888 was the year when George Westinghouse and Tesla agreed to license his patent, rewarding him with a sum of $60,000, 150 shares in stock, and a $2.50 royalty per horsepower generated by AC motor, George offered him $2000 salary per month for working at Westinghouse, having worth of around $1.4 million in today’s terms.
Tearing the Billion Fortune Apart
Edison, witnessing Tesla’s fortune couldn’t stay calm, so he started defaming the AC system in rebellion, spreading rumors about how this system wasn’t safe at all. Alas, the Westinghouse faces a great financial setback. in 1907, after around twenty years of electric war with Edison, the Westinghouse Company was $10 million in debt, George requested Tesla to lower his royalty to save the company from bankruptcy.
Tesla being too good for the world tore apart the original contract, which meant he gave up his royalties and ended the contract, he was grateful to George for believing in him when no one else did. Tesla’s this heroic act saved the company, in return he was granted a lump sum of $216,000 for permission to use his AC patents permanently.
If Tesla would have thought with his mind instead of his heart, he would not die penniless. Tearing this contract, made him lose his luck and sanity to an extent. He died at the age of 87, alone and broke. He’s still remembered and always will be, because if today you’re reading this article, it’s due to Nikola Tesla’s AC system allowing us to have enough electricity.
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