These Happy Accidents Led to Multi-Million Dollar Companies! You’ll Never Look At These Everyday Items the Same Way Again!
It will amaze you to know how many of these everyday items were actually created out of an accident. We don’t often give a thought to how anything we use was created or the history behind a product or service. Granted, most inventions have come about after years of improvements, trial and error, and evolution. But some have just been million-dollar accidents. We’re here to look at some such million-dollar accidents, of course!
One day, mechanical engineer Richard James was attempting to build prototypes to secure that fragile ship equipment — something that would not move as they were sailing. It was when he accidentally dropped his prototypes on the floor and saw them moving on the ground that he got the idea of the slinky. He spent two-long years developing the idea and improving on the slinky until it was the perfect prototype.
The toy was so-named by his wife. It translates in Swedish to ‘graceful’. The couple made 400 units of the toy together, and all 400 units sold in less than 2 hours. Today, over 350 million units of the slinky have been sold. The company has a staggering $3 billion profit, according to CNBC!
Colombian aerobic classes teacher, Beto Perez, used many popular upbeat songs during his sessions in the U.S. It was commonplace for hits by Michael Jackosn and Madonna to be used, and Perez followed suit. However, it so happened one day that Perez forgot his music tape and had a class of people waiting for him to start the session. And so, he used the only tape he happened to have – and it was one with Latin tracks on it. He went with the flow and pretended he had planned it.
He went on to use some improvised salsa moves and the session turned out to be a hit. Zumba was born! It was only a matter of time and it was a global sensation. Everything from products, clothing, and even special cruise tours coming off the brand the founder became an overnight success. Beto’s net worth sits at about $30 million.
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Toll House Inn was popular for its desserts. The owner of Toll House Inn was Ruth Graves Wakefield, and she was a dietician. Ruth enjoyed preparing the food for the guests and it happened that one day when she was baking cookies, she realized too late that she didn’t have any baker’s chocolate. It was then that she decided to add a chopped up bar of Nestle chocolate to the dough, only to be disappointed when the pieces didn’t melt into the dough as it baked. However, as we know, the cookies were delicious and turned out to be a success, becoming popular across the nation. She eventually sold the rights of the cookie to Nestle, where she was employed as the recipe advisor.
Of the many products that are designed for children, few have reached the monumental success that Play-Doh has. You may be surprised to learn that Play-Doh was not actually designed for the purpose of kids’ enjoyment! In fact, it was initially invented for leaning wallpaper. This was way back in 1955 when it was common for homes to be heated using coal, and so there was a good market for an effective wallpaper cleaner. However, once natural gas gained popularity over coal, there was little appeal for the product. It so happened that Joseph heard from a teacher that the product was being used as modeling clay by kids that Joseph got an idea for the product. Joseph and Noah McVicker decided to create Play-Doh, and they eventually sold the secret recipe!
Frank Epperson takes the credit for accidentally creating one of our childhood favorites – the popsicle. He was just a boy of eleven years old way back in 1905 when he mixed soda powder and popped it into the freezer, forgetting that he had left the stirrer in it. He was surprised but liked the idea and sold it to other kids in the neighborhood. In 1923 he sold his creation at an amusement park and truly saw the potential of the product on his hands. He then applied for a patent, but then sold the rights to Joe Lowe Co. a couple of years afterward. The company made millions from the popsicle!
It’s amazing how something that people didn’t intend to happen or create ended up being the reason for their success!
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