Most people know that having a basic understanding of start up finance, a valid business model and a capable person at the helm are essential elements in making a business successful. But starting a business always requires a bit of a leap of faith. It helps to remember that all the biggest companies in the world were a start up at some time or other, so we take a look at some of the most famous companies which started from scratch and are now examples of success.
Lynda Weinman was a professor who used to teach web development in the 1990s. The material available those days was just in the form of text and the students did not enjoy it much. Therefore, Lynda decided to prepare visual training materials for her class and the experience was a fruitful one as they engaged and learnt more. Consequently, she developed more content and a library of visuals in the next few years and eventually LinkedIn paid 1.5 billion dollars to buy it from her.
Jeff Bezos was working at an investment firm when he decided to leave his job to pursue an idea which he had. He wanted to invest in the online retail business, so he opened his shop in a garage and started developing software. Eventually, after facing many problems, he was able to sell his first book online in the same garage and named his company Amazon, It is now the biggest online retailer in the world.
Udacity is a company that started with the aim of promoting technical education among people who did not have many opportunities to do learn it. Sebastian Thurun was the founder in 2011 and provided nine different training courses. Upon their completion, chances of getting a job for those who undertook the courses increased massively because the most prominent companies developed the curriculum. Thurun struggled with finances and had to spend a lot of time finding investment, but currently, it has more than 10,000 students around the globe and is valued at 1 billion dollars.
Currently the biggest media company in the world, Walt Disney started in a tiny space belonging to Robert Disney, uncle of Walt. Despite the small area they used to film many different plays and documentaries such as the Alice Comedies. The studio is located just a few miles from the current location and was known as the Disney Brothers Studio. A couple of years later they moved to a new place and eventually signed a deal to sell their cartoon movie to Universal studios, and there was no looking back after that.
Steve Wozniak was a computer addict who started developing back in 1976. He then teamed up with Steve Jobs and Ronald Wayne to build computers on a larger scale from Steve Job’s house. Their first significant order was from a local company for 50 computers at the price of 25,000 dollars which they were able to produce in just a month. Currently, Apple is the most valuable brand in the world with a value of $950 billion. It is famous for its innovative design and technology.
It started out being called The Point and was a social network where people could engage with each other and talk about different causes they were supporting. Eric Lefkofsky saw some of the users joining in to buy a product to get a discount. He then launched Groupon which started on a small scale providing various discount coupons. Within three years from its inception, Groupon spread to 50 countries and millions of people now utilise its services. The business is currently evaluated at $1 billion and is growing all the time.
Last but not least…
Interestingly Google was not the most innovative idea at the time as several other companies were already running search engines. But it was the dedication and hard work of those behind it that has made it the biggest search engine and online company in the world. Larry Page and Sergey Brin partnered and started the company at an office paying $1700 per month to Susan Wojcicki, who was appointed the first marketing manager of Google in 1999. Within a year they moved to a new location and had more than ten employees working for them. Google is currently evaluated at $110 billion while its parent company Alphabet has a worth of $850 billion.