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The Billion-Dollar Journey: Nvidia’s CEO Wouldn’t Walk the Path Again

It’s a rags-to-riches tale with a twist in the tech world. Nvidia (NVDA), once a humble player in the vast silicon stage, recently blasted through expectations, not just joining the trillion-dollar club but doing a victory lap with record first-quarter earnings that turned heads on Wall Street. This wasn’t just any win; it was a victory steeped in artificial intelligence (AI), making Nvidia the darling of investors with an eye on the future.

But here’s the kicker: Jensen Huang, the mastermind behind Nvidia since its 1993 inception, wouldn’t dare to tread the path again if given a chance.

The journey from exploring 3D graphics in the ’90s to revolutionizing the computing world with the GPU (graphics processing unit) invention wasn’t just paved with gold. It was an uphill battle, a continuous test of resilience and innovation. Nvidia might be hailed as the backbone — the picks and shovels if you will — of the AI revolution, but this acclaim was decades in the making.

Compared to longstanding titans like Apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT), Nvidia took the scenic route to success. It wasn’t until 2016, a good 23 years into their journey and 17 years after their stock market debut, that Nvidia’s stock began its meteoric rise. And what a sight it has been — especially their 2021 rally that left them teetering at an exhilarating, if vertigo-inducing, $1.03 trillion valuation.

But ask Huang if he’d rewind time and brave the entrepreneurial seas again, and it’s a resounding no. Why? Because spearheading Nvidia was “a million times harder” than anyone could imagine, he confessed on the “Acquired” podcast. It’s the entrepreneur’s paradox: you dive in not knowing the depths of the challenges ahead. The fears, the setbacks, the nights wrestling with doubt — it’s a rollercoaster that few would ride knowingly.

Huang’s secret weapon, it seems, wasn’t just his vision; it was the unwavering support of those who believed in him and his company, through every stumble and every win.

And while Nvidia’s shares show a slight dip, their nearly 190% surge this year alone speaks volumes. It’s not just about the numbers; it’s about the journey, the people, and the relentless pursuit of what seemed impossible. Huang might not walk this path again, but his journey is a roadmap for every entrepreneur who has looked at the stars and decided to take the leap.