TOKYO: The Japanese online retail tycoon who plans to travel to the moon on the SpaceX rocket says he respects and trusts Elon Musk as a fellow entrepreneur, despite his recent troubles.
“Twitter can get you into trouble,” Yusaku Maezawa, chief executive of Zozo Inc., said Tuesday at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club in Tokyo. “And that can be said of Elon Musk, too.”
Musk’s tweet in August that declared he had secured financing for a Tesla buyout got him in trouble with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Under a settlement, Tesla and Musk each must pay a $20 million penalty. Musk also stepped down as Tesla’s chairman.
Maezawa, 42, who is also quite active on social media, is set to be a passenger on Musk’s Space X, the first-ever private commercial space trip, scheduled for blastoff in 2023, to orbit the moon, in what Maezawa has dubbed his “#dearMoon Project.”
Maezawa said he got a good feel for Musk’s character by visiting Tesla, and seeing the relationship Musk had developed with his employees.
“They believe in Elon Musk,” he said. “That kind of company is marvelous. I felt that as another entrepreneur.”