Luminar founder, 25, is set to become a billionaire thanks to the SPAC deal

You’ve heard of tech billionaires Musk and Zuckerberg. Well, now there’s Russell — 25-year-old Austin Russell, to be exact.

This enterprising young man left Stanford in 2013 to found Luminar, a tech start-up developing light detection and ranging (LIDAR) technology for the autonomous vehicle industry.

Like many other automotive technology companies in recent months, Luminar is set to go public through a reverse merger with a Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC). Gores Metropoulos (GMHI). This merger should make Russell one of the youngest billionaires in the world.

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A lot of money

SPAC mergers have become almost commonplace in the auto industry this year, with big names like the electric truck maker Nicholas and manufacturer of electrical transmissions hyliion (HYLN 3.71%) both choosing a reverse merger over an IPO.

For its part, if Luminar goes public in Q4 as expected, it won’t even be the first LIDAR company to do so this year. This honor just went to Velodyne Lidar.

Luminar is currently valued at over $3 billion. According to filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Russell will own a roughly 35% stake in the Orlando-based company, worth about $1.1 billion at valuation. of today. Luminar has caught the attention of investors due to its success in reducing the cost of LIDAR systems and its partnership with volkswagen.

Although Russell is the youngest auto entrepreneur to join the billionaire club this year, he’s not the only wealthy 20-something. Hyliion’s Thomas Healy was just 28 when the company went public earlier this month, making him a billionaire too.

John Bromels has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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