From Dropout To IPO: How Austin Russell Constructed A Billion Greenback Firm In His 20s
Faculty dropout Austin Russell based and runs automotive sensor agency Luminar Applied sciences, which went public in a SPAC merger in Dec. 2020.
An optics prodigy, Russell developed the concept for Luminar when he was simply 17 and learning physics at Stanford College. He dropped out of faculty in 2012 after receiving a $100,000 Thiel Fellowship, a program funded by billionaire Peter Thiel to nurture entrepreneurs.
Following Luminar’s itemizing on Nasdaq, Russell turned the world’s youngest self-made billionaire at age 25. Luminar competes with laser lidar makers like Velodyne and Aeva, which make high-tech sensors to assist self-driving automobiles “see” their environment.