Musk and Brin: A brief history of the billionaires’ friendship leading up to rift caused by an alleged affair
- Google cofounder Sergey Brin was a longtime friend and investor of Elon Musk.
- Musk and Brin often spent time sharing ideas with Google cofounder Larry Page, Vice reports.
- Wall Street Journal reports Musk had an affair with Brin’s estranged wife in 2021.
The years-long relationship between Elon Musk and fellow billionaire Google cofounder, Sergey Brin, has been ruptured by an alleged affair between Musk and Brin’s wife in 2021, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Brin, a Tesla investor, provided the struggling company with $500,000 during the 2008 financial crisis, according to WSJ. The Journal reports that Musk said he regularly spent time at Brin’s home in Silicon Valley, and gifted the Google cofounder with one of the first all-electric Tesla SUVs in 2015.
But a source close to the matter told WSJ that Brin had been advised to sell his personal investments in Musk’s various companies as tensions between the billionaires increased. It’s unclear how much the investments are worth.
Musk was especially close to Brin’s fellow Google cofounder, Larry Page, and the three of them were involved in the “world’s weirdest friendship,” according to a 2015 Vice article.
“It’s fun for the three of us to talk about kind of crazy things, and we find stuff that eventually turns out to be real,” Page told biographer Ashlee Vance, according to Vice.
An Insider report on the billionaires’ friendship shares how the duo invested in Tesla despite a not-so-promising test drive with Musk during his early days with the electric-car company.
Brin and his wife, Nicole Shanahan, reportedly were separated in fall 2021 when the alleged affair occurred at Art Basel in early December, according to WSJ. The couple filed for divorce several weeks after Brin found out about the alleged encounter.
People familiar with the matter allege that Musk went so far as to dropping to his knees at a party and begging Brin for forgiveness. Brin reportedly acknowledged the gesture but still doesn’t speak to Musk regularly, the Journal says.