5 Inspiring Start-up Tales That You Got to Know

Entrepreneurship has become a flourishing venture for the young and ambitious in the 21st century. More and more people are opting to take the plunge and start their businesses from scratch, investing their capital.

Start-up projects come with a lot of stakes, yet it could prove to be the best decision you ever made. You must have heard stories of people who made it up the ladder, with sheer determination and the passion for pursuing.

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So here we bring to you five such inspiring instances, where a small start-up reached the zenith of unprecedented success.

1.  PINTEREST

We are all aware of this popular social media platform that allows you to share or pin objects of interest, virtually on your wall or that of your friends. Whether it’s the cake you are baking or the clip from Bali that your friend posted, Pinterest is an exciting place.

It all started back in 2009, when three friends, Ben Silbermann, Paul Sciarra, and Evan Sharp, started developing an app focused on showcasing various collections made by people on a virtual platform.

Ben Silbermann, originally en route to becoming a doctor, was the brainchild behind the concept of this app. With numerous previous flops, disappointments, rejections by investors, this app finally managed to grab the public attention and garnered around 10000 users within a couple of months.

As a mark of gratitude, Silbermann personally wrote to 7000 of the first users of Pinterest. The user base initially rose among moms and gradually gained widespread popularity. However, a survey found that currently, about 80% of Pinterest users are women. Now, Pinterest ranks 35th among the most popular websites in the world.

2.  AIRBNB

Founded by Brian Chesky, Joe Gebbia, and Nathan Blecharczyk, in 2007, as a bed and breakfast initiative for visitors, Airbnb is one of the most inspiring startup stories of the decade.

With no job or investors, along with huge debts, these three friends were in desperate need of money. The idea of bed and breakfast cropped up when they noticed that no hotel rooms were available for people coming to a local Industrial Design Conference.

To solve this problem, they arranged for some mattresses and advertised through their website. This led them to welcome their first three guests, marking the beginning of an unbelievable journey.

At one point, they were running really low on funds making it difficult to run their new startup. However, with sheer determination to carry on, they decided to sell cereals and raise funds!

Soon they got their first investor, following which the company took off to reach its current net worth of 1.5 billion dollars. Airbnb is now found across the world, in 83 countries, and is still growing rapidly towards a more promising future!

3.  SNAPCHAT

In 2011, Stanford University students, Evan Spiegel, Reggie Brown, and Bobby Murphy, laid the foundation of the social media sensation called Snapchat.

It was Brown who first proposed the idea of a social media platform that allowed users to post temporary pictures and videos. Spiegel and Murphy took up the idea, and together they released an app called Picaboo. Soon after they parted ways with Brown, and officially launched Snapchat in 2011.

With a 360 million user base and 20 billion dollar turnover, Snapchat has grown at a phenomenal rate. Once again, the success of these young entrepreneurs teaches us how perseverance can lead to great achievements.

4.  LINKEDIN

Linkedin has become the largest network of professionals across the globe, with millions of visitors and regular job postings. The company may now have a 2.2 billion dollars net worth, but it’s beginning had been quite humble.

Back in 2002, Linkedin was conceptualized in the living room of its co-founder, Reid Hoffman. The following year, it was launched officially as a platform allowing young professionals to connect and expand their careers through proper networking.

Reid Hoffman, Allen Blue, Konstantin Guericke, Eric Ly, and Jean-Luc Vaillant, the five founders, contributed richly through their diverse backgrounds in different successful companies like Google and Microsoft. Over the years, the user base of Linkedin has increased rapidly and has currently reached a whopping 315 million.

You would be surprised to know that over 50% of business professionals on Earth are on Linkedin!

5.  WHATSAPP

In 2009, former Yahoo! employees Brian Acton and Jan Koum, developed Whatsapp as a platform that would allow users to communicate without being hassled by ads or games.

Following the launch of the iPhone, the founders realized the immense potential of the app store and conceptualized the idea of a messaging platform. With a few initial bumps on the road, Whatsapp started its journey from the app store in 2009.

Within four years, it had an active user base of about 300 million. With regular updates, bug fixes and addition of voice calls, video calls, a web-based platform on PC, and other user-friendly features, this app gained immense popularity and, by 2015, became the most popular messaging app surpassing Facebook.

Currently, Whatsapp has over 2 billion users worldwide and has been purchased by Facebook.Inc for a cool 19.3 billion dollars. Admittedly, this company is one of the prime examples of “ An idea can go a long way!”

FINAL NOTE

Start-ups are ambitious and risky ventures, but the cornerstone of innovation. All these companies that we mentioned here have one thing in common that is determination even in the face of adversity.

If you notice carefully, the beginning was never smooth for any of them, and one of the most apparent hurdles they all faced was the lack of faith from investors or people in general who were skeptical about anything new. However, all great inventions have faced doubts, for being too extraordinary to be perceived as possible.

A clear vision, combined with sheer will and hard work to make it happen, allowed these young entrepreneurs to be so successful even with the lack of enough resources. As Roopleen had correctly said, “ If you have a dream, leave no stone unturned to make it happen!”

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