Monday, July 5, 2010

Inventions that made millions!

Walk of fame
Apparently, when unemployed Duke Hanson first saw these shoes his friend had got from a Canadian factory he didn't think the world of them but once he tried on the resin shoes, they felt super comfortable. Along with two of his pals, he made a deal with the Canadian company to be their sole US distributors. Three months later, he sold 1000 pairs at the Miami Boat Show. Crocs were a hit. They still are. Till date they've sold more than 100 million pairs of shoes. And to think Duke Hanson was just an unemployed dude on a boat! What a rags to riches story!

Moral of the story: So what if no one likes your idea? Go with your instinct and you just might hit jackpot!

Here's to other rags to riches stories that started of with just a simple idea…
Sticky business
They were two ordinary guys. Spencer Silver worked as a senior chemist in a research lab and painted in his free time. At his workplace, Spencer accidentally developed this reusable pressure sensitive adhesive. For three years he tried to promote his invention but to no avail.

Arthur Fry who worked with Silver used to sing in his church choir. Whenever Arthur put a bookmark in his hymnal it would slip down making it difficult for him to find the page he required. Then suddenly, he had a "Eureka" moment! Arthur realised that Silver's adhesive was the answer to his problem. Their company 3M patented the product and that's how Post it's were born!

Moral of the story: If there is a problem, there must be a solution somewhere. And get this; there are millions of people ready to pay for that solution no matter how insignificant the problem is.

Toy story
Did you know you could have an avant-garde idea while watching your child play? Ruth Handler did. While watching her daughter play, she noticed that her little one enjoyed playing with her infant paper dolls and giving them adult roles. So she wanted to create an adult doll for her. That was the origin of Barbie (named after Handler’s daughter Barbara).

She pitched the idea to her husband and his business partner who were running a small toy company Mattel but they weren't kicked about it. So she began developing the plastic doll on her own and in 1959 the first Barbie debuted! Barbie was a rage and Handler became rich and famous overnight. Thanks to her, today almost every little girl in every corner of the world owns one! In fact, Mattel claims that three Barbie dolls are sold every second.

Moral of the story: You can have a groundbreaking idea sitting on the toilet. You don't have to be electric-haired in a chemistry lab you know.

A stitch in time
Jacob Davis was a tailor with a painful customer. The guy kept coming to him with ripped pockets demanding that they be repaired. Jacob's dilemma was how to reinforce this guy's pants so they don't keep coming apart. Jacob decided to purchase metal rivets from Levi Strauss' dry goods store and used them in strategic places like the corners of the pockets and base of the fly. It worked like a charm.

Jacob wanted to patent his invention but he couldn't afford the $68 fee. That's when he approached Levi and the two went into business together. So the next time you wear a sexy pair of Levi's after you've swiped your card for Rs4000, remember that back in the day, a pair of jeans barely cost $1.50 and were meant for workers no less ;)!

Moral of the story: Have a nose for big business. When you see an idea that can make millions jump at it, even if it isn't yours.

Million-dollar network
How many of us care about anything other than boring professors, fashion trends and may be a weekend date when we are in college? Well, not Mark Zuckerberg. This guy was constantly tinkering around – developing music players, video games, all kinds of stuff. Of course, no one had heard of him till he joined Harvard. He along with a few classmates developed one of the biggest social networking sites in the world – Facebook – in their dorm room in 2004! Today this 26-year-old is sitting on a gold mine thanks to his genius.

Moral of the story: Don't wait till you are old and eccentric to put those gray cells to use. Start early and you will be a millionaire early!


Tandarin Nike said...

Very positive post. Loved it. Keep posting.

Post a Comment