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Not all investments make $$$~Success/Failure $$ museum
Old 12-08-2005, 11:53 AM   #1
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Not all investments make $$$~Success/Failure $$ museum

Back in the late 1950s, Warren Buffett and his friend Tom Knapp cornered the market on 1954 Blue Eagle 4-cent airmail stamps. They found out that the 400,000 stamps were nearly worthless -- plus the sheets kept sticking together. Buffett sold much of the lot at 10 percent of face value.

Failure!
~~~~~~

In 1891, Asa Candler, an Atlanta entrepreneur, paid pharmacist John Pemberton $2,300 for the formula to his weird brown health drink named Coca-Cola. Last year the company had revenue of $22 billion.

SUCCESS!
~~~~~~~
Standard Oil magnate Henry Flagler was mocked for buying the Jacksonville, St. Augustine & Halifax Railroad in 1885 and expanding it to Miami, linking South Florida with the rest of the country. Once people could get there, he gave them somewhere to go, building Palm Beach and Miami from the ground up.

SUCCESS!
~~~~~~~


Malcolm Glazer was ridiculed when he paid $192 million for the hapless Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1995. But after a 2003 Super Bowl win, the team is now valued at more than $700 million. This year, Glazer paid $1.47 billion for 75 percent of U.K. soccer club Manchester United.

SUCCESS!
~~~~~~~

It was literally, poetically, falling down. But that didn't stop oil magnate Robert McCulloch from shelling out $2.46 million to the City of London for the famed London Bridge in 1968. He moved it to Arizona and made it the centerpiece of his Lake Havasu resort, now a popular vacation destination.

SUCCESS!
~~~~~~~

Back in 1961, $2.7 million seemed like a lot of money for a hamburger stand and some golden arches -- in today's dollars, that would be $16.8 million -- but Ray Kroc took the plunge. Forty-four years later, there are more than 30,000 McDonald's franchises throughout the world, and the company grossed $19.1 billion last year.

SUCCESS
~~~~~~~

NBC and Vince McMahon lost $35 million each when they started the XFL football league to satisfy Americans who couldn't make it through summer without football. In the end, though, the lack of talent kept fans away in droves.

Failure!
~~~~~~~

Bookstore baron Louis Borders was among investors who took a bath on doomed online grocer Webvan, which raised $375 million in its 1999 IPO, then lost nearly a billion before going bankrupt in 2001.

Failure!
~~~~~~~

Ted Turner sold off most of MGM as soon as he bought it in 1986 (he paid Kirk Kerkorian $1.5 billion), but he held on to the pre-1986 film and TV-show catalogs. In 1988 he used the film library to start TNT. Turner sold his media holdings to Time Warner in 1996; now classics like Casablanca are raking in the DVD dough.

SUCCESS!
~~~~~~~

When George Bissell bought a Titusville, Pa., farm in 1859, he believed lamp oil could be derived from the odd black sludge that bubbled out of nearby creeks. To collect it he developed the first modern oil well and struck black gold.

SUCCESS!






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Re: Not all investments make $$$~Success/Failure $$ museum
Old 12-09-2005, 12:44 AM   #2
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Re: Not all investments make $$$~Success/Failure $$ museum

Quote:
Originally Posted by mickeyd
Back in 1961, $2.7 million seemed like a lot of money for a hamburger stand and some golden arches -- in today's dollars, that would be $16.8 million -- but Ray Kroc took the plunge. Forty-four years later, there are more than 30,000 McDonald's franchises throughout the world, and the company grossed $19.1 billion last year.
When I read "McDonald's: Behind the Arches", I was amazed at how flimsy the company was in the early 1960s and how many times it stood on the brink of bankruptcy. Just about every chapter described a set of circumstances where failure could have brought the whole thing crashing down.

Kroc succeeded because he worked his butt off and learned enough from his many mistakes to survive the next round. I suspect that most businesses are that way, and it's not easy to pick the successes from the failures.
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Re: Not all investments make $$$~Success/Failure $$ museum
Old 12-09-2005, 01:58 AM   #3
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Re: Not all investments make $$$~Success/Failure $$ museum

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
When I read "McDonald's: Behind the Arches", I was amazed at how flimsy the company was in the early 1960s and how many times it stood on the brink of bankruptcy.* Just about every chapter described a set of circumstances where failure could have brought the whole thing crashing down.

Kroc succeeded because he worked his butt off and learned enough from his many mistakes to survive the next round.* I suspect that most businesses are that way, and it's not easy to pick the successes from the failures.
A lot of businesses never get past the "flimsy" stages and still manage to hang on for years. It's the "in business" side of my willpower/brainpower
formula for ER. If you have enough of those (and cojones..... Sorry ladies)
Why, there is no limit to what can be accomplished. It's still a great
country, even though the politicians are doing their best to ruin it.

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