The world was surprised when Elon Musk announced the passenger of the first commercial SpaceX flight. The future space trip seems to be just another mark in the career of Yusaku Maezawa, one of the most interesting Japanese billionaires.
Maezawa is one of the lucky billionaires that hit gold early, founding a successful CD business when he was in his early twenties. His company was one of the first e-commerce initiatives in Japan, and it now own and operates a popular fashion enterprise, with annual sales that reach almost $900 million last year alone.
How much is he worth?
It is estimated that his personal worth is around three billion dollars. The number may not be very impressive, but in a country were billionaires are rare, he is a well-known figure. What makes him more noticeable is the fact that he publicly enjoys his fortune, flying with his private jet and driving around in expensive sports cars. By contrast, rich Japanese often tend to have a low profile in order to avoid unwanted attention.
A musical origin
His charming style may originate in his humble beginnings, as he was a drummer in several indie rock bands. One of the banns became successful and he quitted his studies at the well-known Waseda University in order to pursue his career. He would later start his own enterprise, selling imported CDs.
Patron of arts
Maezawa is a well-known art collector, as he bought several pieces by Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat, besides other names. He made history last year when he offered $110.5 million for a panting by Basquiat, registering a record price for a painting made by an American artist.
The man is certainly a visionary, and his company is constantly trying to bring innovation to the industry.
The space fare
Maezawa declared that he wants to make the first trip a landmark for humanity, and he plans to invite several high-ranking personalities from creative domains to join him on the trip.
Patrick Supernaw is the lead editor for Great Lakes Ledger. Patrick has written for many publications including The Huffington Post and Vanity Fair. Patrick is based in Ottawa and covers issues affecting his city. In addition to his severe hockey addiction, Pat also enjoys kayaking and can often be found paddling the Rideau Canal. Contact Pat here