10 Amazing Facts About Well-Known Brands
Companies spend billions on marketing every year in an attempt to sell us on their brands and products, with the ultimate goal of getting us to buy. But how much do we really know about the people and stories behind the advertising billboards and pretty packaging?
Today's list delves into the turbulent and often serendipitous histories of many well known brands, bringing you amazing stories from the trenches that lead to some of today's largest corporate giants.
A lucky weekend in Vegas saved FedEx
What do you do when your company is down to its last five thousand dollars, and a fuel bill is due on the other side of the weekend? Most of us would go to a bank or a relative, or break out the credit card. But that's why most of us don't own global companies.
FedEx CEO and founder Fred Smith ran into difficulty early on, approaching an important point in the company's development where they were short on cash, but close to success. Emptying the bank accounts of the company, Smith flew to Las Vegas with one game in mind. After a weekend at the blackjack table, Smith returned with over thirty thousand dollars in the bank, more than enough to keep the company afloat for the week. Decades later, Smith is worth over $2 billion, but if not for a wild gamble, he and his company would have faded away.
Without Prohibition, Coca-Cola would not exist.
Formulated by pharmacist John Pemberton, Pemberton's French Wine Coca was an Americanized version of Vin Mariani, a patented medicine made from the Coca plant. It was claimed that this alcoholic drink was a cure-all, alleviating such ills as constipation, impotence, nerve trouble, and morphine addiction.
Made and marketed in Atlanta, Pemberton's medicine was becoming quite popular until Fulton County and Atlanta implemented prohibitive legislation in 1886 for the use of excessive alcohol. In response, Pemberton reformulated the drink to meet the requirements of the legislation, and decided to sell it as a soft drink instead of a medicine. This new drink, while not readily adopted by many, would go on to some amount of success – today, it goes by the trade name of Coca-Cola.