With Tesla, SpaceX and Twitter additionally on his plate, Elon Musk’s The Boring Firm is the lesser identified of the billionaire’s large swings, however one which promised to upend conventional infrastructure. The corporate was born with a tweet in 2016 when Musk mentioned he was sick of site visitors. He purchased a tunnel-boring machine and began digging. On the time, it appeared like a publicity stunt, however then he truly did it.
The corporate has made some splashy information, notably its unconventional fundraising techniques like selling flamethrowers and fragrance that smells like burnt hair. However, in keeping with a new report within the Wall Avenue Journal, the brand new fragrance is not the one little bit of Boring enterprise that smells humorous.
Apparently, the corporate has a historical past of creating guarantees it will possibly’t maintain. The article particulars numerous occasions Boring stepped in to play hero to an ailing infrastructure mission, solely to again out when it got here to signing on the dotted line.
For instance, in January 2020, officers in Ontario, California, have been trying to construct a lightweight rail connection from Ontario Worldwide Airport to a prepare station 4 miles away. The mission was taking a look at a $1 billion price ticket. Boring stepped in, unsolicited, and provided to make the reference to an underground tunnel and autonomous EVs for $45 million. However, when it got here time to formalize the deal, Boring balked and ghosted the neighborhood — the $500 million price projection as of 2021 might have had one thing to do with it.
In accordance with the Journal, Boring has accomplished the identical in Chicago, L.A. and Maryland. Officers say that a part of the issue is that Boring struggles with paperwork, like permits and environmental critiques.
The corporate’s lone functioning tunnel is a 1.6-mile loop beneath the Las Vegas Conference Middle that one IEN colleague not too long ago described as a “gimmick.”
Nonetheless, it is attainable that whereas the tunneling expertise is not there but, the corporate’s prospects nonetheless maintain promise. And Boring nonetheless has its true believers. Within the spring, the corporate raised some $675 million in funds that valued the corporate round $5.7 billion, which is nothing to smell at.