Entrepreneurs who inspired with idea can do crazy things to improve own business. So there are stories of youthfulness of well known companies and their founders.
If you’ve spent any time at the blackjack table, there’s a special place in your heart for this story. Fedex was down to around $5,000 in their back account and needed $24,000 to pay for jet fuel to keep the company alive. He secretly took the $5,000 to Las Vegas and won $27,000 playing blackjack. It was enough to keep the company alive for another week and give it enough runway to survive to become what it is today.
Reddit, known as the "Front Page of the Internet," is a site based on user-generated news links. In 2013, it had 731 million unique visitors.But when it launched in 2005, it had so few visitors that the co-founders operated multiple fake user accounts and responded to themselves to give the semblance of traffic. Furthermore, since the founders owned all the fake accounts, they could build the tone and shape the discourse and direction of the site.
Their "fake it 'til you make it" philosophy paid off. As the real user base grew, they were able to abandon the fake accounts.
Have you heard that Nokia started with producing a wide range of goods - such as toilet paper and rubber shoes! Actually, it was operating in 4 industries: paper, electronics, rubber, and cable. At some point the company got involved in a successful partnering and then its story as a telephone company started. This is how a partnership might change your startup’s future!
Startup, which originally had a name ThePoint.com, was founded as a platform where any person could start a campaign and invite people either to give some money or to participate in an activity. As the service didn’t find product-market fit, it had to pivot - it was a real luck that co-founders realised it in time and started offering its users discounted services and products.
The magazine was started by Hugh Hefner who previously worked for Esquire and decided to create his own magazine for men which would be like Esquire, but better. One of the success factors was that the first edition in 1953 featured Marilyn Monroe. It was produced at Hefner’s house and had 50,000 copies. Now the magazine brings Hugh Hefner $116,667 per month.
Airbnb (Air, Bed and Breakfast) allows people to rent short-term lodging in residential properties, with the cost of such accommodation set by the property owner. Brian Chesky, Nathan Blecharczyk and Joe Gebbia are the founders.
After unsuccessful launch of a platform for travelers, founders went through big stress and decided to produce breakfast cereals to be profitable. The breakfast cereals were connected with presidential elections.
Idea of platform for flat owners and renters did not leave guys so after a while they entered Y Combinator.
Curiously, in accelerator there was lots of skepticism about website, but founders of Y Combinator liked breakfast cereals.
To reanimate Airbnb entrepreneurs personally met with flat owners. They spoke with them, offered to make professional photos, cut prices. "They have never given up if we didn't meet with them", said Nathan. Landlords began to get money, told about Airbnb to friends and new users came, registered their places.
Now Airbnb gives people unique impressions from travels at any price in 191 countries and more than 34 000 cities.
Ferrucio was originally a farmer who made tractors. His business was very successful and he was among the most wealthy people in Italy. He owned a few cars, and one of them was Ferrari, which actually constantly caused troubled. Being a mechanic, he tried to fix the problem and found out that his Ferrari had the same clutch as the one he used in one of his tractors.
Ferrucio went to the service guys regularly to have a clutch rebuilt or renewed, and every time, the car was taken away for several hours and he was not allowed to watch it being repaired. The problem with the clutch was never cured, so Ferrucio decided to talk to Enzo Ferrari. He had to wait for him for a very long time.
'Ferrari, your cars are rubbish!' Ferrucio complained. Il Commendatore was furious. "Lamborghini, you may be able to drive a tractor but you will never be able to handle a Ferrari Properly.' This was the point when he finally decided to make a perfect car. Yes, Lamborghini.
After moving to Chicago in 1891 with just $32 in his pocket, William Wrigley, Jr. began a soap business. As an incentive to buy the soap, Wrigley threw in a free can of baking powder. Soon he found out that baking powder was more popular than soap, and he switched businesses. A year later, Wrigley started throwing in chewing gum for buying baking powder. When chewing gum made a bigger profit than baking powder, Wrigley shifted businesses once again. His success with gum, however, stuck considerably well. Juicy Fruit, anyone?
If you have interesting stories about your company, please share in comments. Some new and original stories of yours can make a new article!