Who are the 10 greatest entrepreneurs?
Any small business owner must face a harsh truth. Even at the best of times, most small businesses will fail. In this article, we will look at ten entrepreneurs who have not only succeeded but also built a huge business empire.
- Here are ten entrepreneurs who built business empires, such as John D. Rockefeller of Standard Oil and steel giant Andrew Carnegie.
- Thomas Edison founded General Electric (GE), while Henry Ford revolutionized manufacturing and introduced cars to the masses.
- Sam Walton founded Wal-Mart and modernized its distribution, while Walt Disney created the largest media company on the planet.
- Microsoft’s Bill Gates and Apple’s Steve Jobs also made the list.
John D. Rockefeller
By most standards, John D. Rockefeller is the richest man in history. He made a fortune through horizontal and vertical integration to improve efficiency, which made Standard Oil synonymous with monopoly, but also drastically reduced fuel prices for everyday consumers. The government permanently dissolved the Standard Oil Company in 1911.Rockefeller’s hands can still be seen in companies such as Exxon Mobil (XOM) and ConocoPhillips, which profit from R&D and infrastructure as part of their spin-off. Rockefeller retired at the turn of the century and dedicated the rest of his life to charity. More than 80 years after his death, Rockefeller is still one of the great figures on Wall Street.
Andrew Carnegie loves efficiency. Since he started working in the steel industry, Carnegie’s factory has been at the forefront of technology. Carnegie combined his excellent process with an excellent sense of timing to snap up steel assets every time the market is down. Like Rockefeller, Carnegie spent his golden years and dedicated most of his life’s wealth to him (though not remembered like some of his contemporaries, Andrew Carnegie Neji’s legacy is strong and ethical).
There is no doubt that Edison’s talent is brilliant, but it is his business sense, not his talent as an inventor, that clearly shows his wisdom. Edison took innovation and made it a process now called R&D. Before he created most of the electricity infrastructure in the United States on his own, he sold his services to many other companies. Although Edison was the founder of General Electric (GE), many companies today are attributed to him-Edison Electric, United Edison, and so on. Although Edison had far more patents than his company relationships, it was the company that brought his legacy into the future.
Henry Ford did not invent the car. He is a member of the team that studies cars, and it can be said that he is not even the best among them. However, the price at which these competitors sell their cars makes cars a luxury for the wealthy. Ford put America-not just the rich-on wheels and unleashed the power of mass production. His Ford Model T was the first car to cater to most Americans. Ford’s progressive labor policies and his continuous efforts to make each car better, faster, and cheaper, have made his workers and ordinary Americans think of Ford (F) when buying cars.
Charles E. Merrill brought high financing to the middle class. After the stock market crash in 1929, the public vowed not to use stocks and anything more financial than savings accounts. Merrill Lynch changed this situation by adopting a supermarket approach, sacrificing high commissions to serve more people and make money on a larger number. Merrill Lynch strives to “bring Wall Street to the street”, educates his customers through free courses, publishes rules of conduct for his company, and always puts the interests of customers first.
Sam Walton chose a market that no one wanted, and then built a distribution system that no one had tried in the retail industry. By establishing warehouses between his several Wal-Mart (WMT) stores, Walton was able to save shipping costs and deliver goods to busy stores more quickly. With the addition of the most advanced inventory control system, Walton’s cost profit margin is significantly lower than his direct competitors. Walton did not record all savings as profits, but passed them on to consumers. By continuing to offer low prices, Walton attracted more and more business to where he chose to open a store. In the end, Walton brought Wal-Mart to the big cities to match the profit margins of the big boys—and the beasts of Bentonville never looked back.
Charles Schwab, often referred to as “Chuck”, brought Merrill’s love for small people and belief in quantity greater than price into the Internet age. When “May Day” opened the door for negotiating fees—all brokerage transactions before the price were the same—Schwab was one of the first companies to provide discount brokerage services to individual investors.To this end, he laid off researchers, analysts, and consultants, and ruled out the power that investors gave themselves when placing orders. Schwab started from a basic foundation and added services that are important to his customers, such as 24-hour service and more branches. Merrill Lynch brought individual investors back to the market, but Chuck Schwab made the price cheap enough to keep them.
In the 1920s, Walt Disney was on the verge of building a cultural giant. As a talented animator for an advertising company, Disney began to create his own animated short films in the studio’s garage. Disney created a character Mickey Mouse inspired by the mouse roaming in his office, and made him the hero of “Steamboat Willie” in 1928.The commercial success of Mickey Mouse allowed Disney to create a cartoon factory composed of animators, musicians and artists. Disney turned the mouse into several amusement parks, feature-length animations and merchandise sales tycoons. After his death, Disney (DIS) and his mouse continued to grow and became the founders of the largest media company on the planet.
When people describe Bill Gates, they usually think of “rich”, “competitive” and “smart”. Among these three characteristics, Gates’ competitive nature created his wealth. Not only did he win the operating system (OS) and Internet browser wars, but he also stored the profits from the victory — and Microsoft’s dominance — to fund future battles and adventures. Xbox is just one of many side businesses funded by a huge war fund. The fact is that Microsoft’s cash and Gates’ unwillingness to pay cash are important reasons for the company to survive difficult times and obtain funding for expansion during boom times.
Steve Jobs co-founded Apple (AAPL), one of the few technology companies that challenged Microsoft’s dominance. Contrary to Gates’ methodical expansion, Jobs’ influence on Apple was one of the creative explosions. When Jobs returned to Apple, Apple was still a computer company. Now, the iPod, iPhone and iPad are the growth engines that push Apple beyond the once impeccable Microsoft. In 2010, Apple’s market value surpassed Microsoft for the first time.As of 2019, there are more than 500 million Apple customers worldwide.
These ten entrepreneurs succeeded by offering their customers something better, faster, and cheaper than their closest competitors. There is no doubt that people like Rockefeller will always appear on these lists, but there is enough room for the right people to find their place in the pantheon of entrepreneurs.