Here's what $44 billion dollars can buy. Besides Twitter

We may all feel buyer's remorse.
Ameya Paleja
Elon Musk having the last laugh.JD Lasica/Wikimedia

As the year 2021 came to a close, we reported a relatively insignificant story about an online game that lets you spend billions of dollars as though you were Elon Musk, the wealthiest person on the planet. Little did we know that Musk himself was pondering over this question and, less than 30 days later, had made up his mind to invest in Twitter?

Back then, Musk's worth was just under $200 billion and ballooned to over $250 billion at the time of writing this article. That is a reasonable $6 billion to spare after buying out Twitter. But what if Musk had reserved his $44-odd billion to spend on himself. After all, he has been reported to work more than 120 hours a week.  What could Elon Musk spend this moolah on?

Own a country

When news first broke that Musk had made a bid for Twitter, on the other side of the world, the tiny nation of Sri Lanka defaulted on its debt. Coincidentally, Sri Lanka's total debt is around $35 billion, so Twitterati urged Elon to pay the debt and rename the country Ceylon Musk, a reference to the country's name when it was a British colony.  

Jokes apart, the country is going through a humanitarian crisis, and as we have seen in the past, Musk isn't the one to contribute to it anyways. So, it is likely he could put his money somewhere else. 

Luxuries of the world

One obvious sign of someone making it big is the way they gather the world's luxuries. One need not look very far than the #2 on the most prosperous person list, who is spending close to $500 million on a custom-built yacht

Musk could send Bezos another #2 medal after buying the world's most expensive yacht, priced at $4.8 billion, and may even get 10 of those as spares. Alternatively, he could have spent the rest of the money on buying a personal armada consisting of an aircraft carrier to protect his marine asset. 

An asset that would surely bring more attention to Musk would be the Palace of Versailles, with 700 rooms, 600 paintings, 400 sculptures, and 1,400 fountains, to name a few, at $50 billion. Closer to home, there is also the White House, which is estimated to be lesser than $400 million, but as we have seen, Musk is looking for something closer to Boca Chica, so that's a no-go. 

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Something for the Community

Last year, we had reported that Musk had donated a sum of $5 billion to a charity. So, the man isn't averse to philanthropy (as long as the Foundation is his own). According to the details available then, Musk has been supporting schools in Texas. Even if the idea of floating a university in the state might be a lame joke, Musk might do something for the community at large.

Probably build a stadium, or perhaps 40 with the money on hand. After all, the world-famous Wembley Stadium cost just a few million over a billion dollars. We also know that Musk likes throwing mega-events, so he could host 1,000 Oscar award ceremonies that cost approximately $44 million for an evening.

Man of Science

If all this sounds contrary to Musk, we have just the right thing. Spend the money on science. As a supporter of the privatized space race, Musk would surely be happy to fund a program that sends the Elon Musk Space Telescope- Model S, and the subsequent upgraded ones called 3, X, and Y that would peer into the far corners into the universe and possibly look for sites where Starships could land. 

According to inflation-adjusted costs computed by NASA, the Hubble Telescope cost $16 billion, so it would not be surprising if Musk put a hold on the Model Y just for the kicks he would get by naming the three telescopes. 

If not outer space, Musk would likely fund the discovery of atomic particles and could own 10 of the Large Hadron Collider, which was built at the cost of $4.7 billion, and "unlock its true potential" by making it private. 

Invest in Technology

Even if Musk was only interested in investing his money and not splurging it like ordinary people want to do, there were many other companies that he could have bought for a similar purse size. 

Another social media company, Snap, was also available for a slightly higher valuation of $48 billion and could have been a great platform to make promises about Cybertruck and not follow them up. With disappearing messages, it would make it harder to nail Musk to his deadlines in this world.

Or, if Musk wished to understand the Chinese population better, he could snap up Chinese search giant Baidu, a deal that would have probably seen more resistance than what the Twitter board showed anyways. 

Another significant acquisition would have been Coinbase, the crypto exchange platform, given Musk's interest in crypto coins and a way for him to liquidate Tesla's Bitcoin kitty in the future if it ever came to it. 

 While we spent imagining what things could have been, Musk has probably moved on to this next target that we will probably know about in the next six to eight months.  

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