For several months, I have been keeping an eye on Tesla Motors, which unveiled an electric-only roadster a couple of days ago. I am not in the market for a car, electric or otherwise (I don't need one here in D.C. and don't have one), but the combination of investors in this company is interesting.
Elon Musk, the founder and majority owner of SpaceX, is the principal non-founding investor of Tesla, is the Chairman of the Board, and appears to be the primary person who is selling other investors on the company. I note that Musk co-led the placement of Tesla's 3rd round of financing ($40 million), even though individual investors leading a round at this stage is slightly unusual. Normally, I would expect to see only investment banks lead a 3rd round of this magnitude. This suggests that Musk brought his friends along for a large portion of this round. Kimbal Musk, Elon's brother, is also an investor in the company and is on the Board of Directors. As you may know, Kimbal is also a minority investor in SpaceX.
The investor friends of Elon Musk appears to include Larry Page and Sergey Brin, who participated as individuals in the latest round of financing. This is important for SpaceX, considering that Musk will be looking for deep pockets for its round of financing for Falcon 9 and the Dragon manned capsule, as well as for its long-range plans for a Saturn V-class rocket. The Falcon 9 and Dragon probably are within Musk's means, although I bet he would like to share the load. The Saturn V-class rocket would require pockets that few on Earth have. Page and Brin are among those few.
In any event, even though I am not a lover of fine cars, I wish Tesla Motors well in its endeavors. The name choice brings warmth to my heart (there's a good biography available). And the car is a beauty!