Elon Musk, the man behind Tesla Motors and SpaceX has brought the idea of a new transportation system to the public in 2013. He named it: Hyperloop. The Hyperloop compared to the current modes of transport is potentially much cleaner and faster than cars, trains or plains. It is most valuable for travel times between cities that are too far to drive and too close to fly. The idea is to shoot capsules with people or goods through vacuumed tubes at speeds of around 760 mph (1220km/h).
The reason he did not pursue the idea in the form of a new company is because he is too time-constrained with his current activities as CEO of both earlier mentioned companies.
The potential value of this transportation system was too big to keep it as an idea so that’s why he uploaded a paper explaining his idea to a blog. JumpStartFund created Hyperloop Transportation Technologies which combines some elements of crowdfunding and crowdsourcing. They brought together a big pool of engineers that were interesting on working on this idea in exchange for stock options. On the 20th of August 2015 they announced there are 400 “team members” working on the project. These are employees from firms like Boeing, NASA and SpaceX. This makes a very interesting business model where people are working on a project they like in their spare time.
Hyperloop Transportation Technologies also shared their intentions to get Hyperloop public via a DPO (direct public offering) which is accessible to the general public from the start. The reason for this is that they want to give the community the opportunity to participate. Normally this would be exclusively for institutional investors. It will be very interesting to see what the future of this project will be and when the switch will be made to an actual business with employees.