If you were asked to imagine what it takes to start a successful venture, you would probably visualize the owner spending sleepless nights thinking of the perfect idea. You could also think of the stress, strain and pure agony that a person must have gone through to get their business up and running. Indeed, this is usually the case for the majority of successful startups. It does not mean however that there were no startups that initially started as a mere joke but went on to become some remarkable brands. There are several ventures in the market today that started under the weirdest unimaginable circumstances but which are nevertheless impressive. Here are 4 of the most ridiculous startup ideas that became very successful.
Minecraft is a vastly popular game which is available across several platforms. This game was developed by Swedish game designer Markus Persson and launched through his company Majong in 2009. The game was created in an unconventional manner that was seen as only relevant to the older technologies of the early computer eras. This game was developed that way despite the fact that most of the popular games at the time featured the most advanced technologies. Minecraft was developed with a very small budget and it used graphics that were almost comical due to their age. Nevertheless, Minecraft became one of the most popular games of 2011. The otherwise odd startup became so successful that it was acquired by Microsoft for over 2 billion dollars.
Amazon is another startup that began in very unlikely circumstances. In the 1990’s the internet was merely seen as a tool for sending messages from one end to the other. Not many people saw any huge potential in the platform back then. Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, saw an opportunity that most other people did not see. He established the company as an online bookstore. The digital infrastructure at that time could barely support online enterprises let alone digital transactions. Amazon, however, became a leading bookstore and over the years, the name of the brand became quite entrenched in the web. The product line also evolved over the years as the store became bigger and bigger. Today, the company is the largest store and it is a great company to invest in according to Admiral markets. Amazon is publicly listed in NASDAQ, the American stock exchange market.
Paypal is a leading online payments system that was started in 1999 as Confinity. When it started, the company was not a payments platform nor did it have ambitions to venture into the digital finance realm. In 2000, however, the company merged with Elon Musk’s x.com. X.com was itself an online banking company that did not have much clout at the time. The merger, however, paved the way for a clearer vision. By 2001, it had evolved into Paypal.com. The company became publicly listed in 2002 and continued to gain huge investment from the public. Later that year, the online payments company was acquired by eBay. The company grew tremendously under this arrangement. It acquired several other smaller startups along the way until it became a company of its own again in 2014. As of 2018, the company is still growing and it currently has a global reach.
Finally, Facebook.com is a company that has probably the most ridiculous background. Facebook was started as a program called “facemash” by Mark Zuckerberg when he was a sophomore at Harvard University in 2003. When he wrote the program, Zuckerberg did not envision a social media network that would be used for sharing media and information. Instead, he started the program as a tool that he used to ask for opinions about neighborhood photos. Because of its initial setup and non-compliance with local laws, the website landed Zuckerberg into trouble with the school administration. In 2004, however, the website went live again as thefacebook.com. The goals of the website also changed and by 2005, the website was accepting signups by people from around the country. The company has since evolved to be the largest social media website on the internet. Facebook is renowned as one of the first companies that heralded the social media phenomenon. In 2018, Facebook also owns several other companies on the web.
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