▷ 30 surprising and inspiring business stories to tell in the evening

Business stories fascinate me a lot. That’s why today I have the pleasure of sharing 30 short but effective business stories with you tonight …

In this article you will find stories about more or less well-known companies, brands and personalities, mixed with crisp anecdotes that you probably are not aware of.

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These stories are useful for motivating, inspiring, surprising and convincing. Convince yourself that it is possible to succeed even when everything seems lost. That it is also possible to strike without necessarily respecting the rules of the established order …

These stories prove that success is within everyone’s reach, and that true genius often comes from the unexpected or from simplicity …

Storytelling has already been treated beautifully by the excellent Sophie Gauthier, the content researcher (Click here to read her article).

That is why I would offer you, dear readers, something different, but nonetheless complementary, that would probably convince you of the power that a simple story can offer!

Here are now 30 surprising business stories to discover or rediscover. Let’s go !

1 # – Amazon: Books Online

It’s the story of a business that started in a garage. Based in the Seattle suburbs, this company sold its first book online in 1995. The fortune of its creator, Jeff Bezos, is estimated in 2019 at more than $ 131 billion.

2 # – LEGO: A simple carpenter …


It is the story of a carpenter who, after overcoming the worst difficulties, such as the fire at his toy factory twice and the death of his wife, still manages to build a huge empire that is worth a true fortune today.

3 # – Apple: A universe in itself!

It is the story of a charismatic leader who, not to mention the technical characteristics of his products, but rather a context or a universe, manages to create a prestigious and legendary brand. With Apple, the whole story is the customer!

4 # – Le Slip Français: Underpants and men

It’s the story of a polite boy who has been unemployed for 15 days and is betting on being able to sell 100% made in France panties. He starts with 600 panties in the colors of the French flag and then achieves 40,000 euros in turnover in 4 months.

5 # – Twitter: After a good binge …

It’s the story of two men who, when they returned from a drunken night in 2006, got the idea for their website at 2am in a car. Less than 10 years later, the company’s revenue is estimated at $ 1.4 billion.

6 # – Airiness: Persistence embodied

This is the story of a man who sees his dreams shattered by a serious accident. After 12 knee surgeries and after giving up his dream of becoming a professional boxer, he created a brand that would later be worth millions of euros.

7 # – Nintendo: Card Games …

This is the story of a Japanese company that originally only made games … of cards! Thanks to this activity, this company created in 1889 by Fusajiro Yamauchi has gained a solid reputation. Today, Nintendo is unmatched.

8 # – Varilux: Do you see anything there?


This is the story of a young engineer with a passion for optics who embarks on the development of an ophthalmic lens that allows you to look at all distances. No one believed in his concept except himself. He is the inventor of the Varilux progressive lens.

9 # – Nike: A logo for $ 35

This is the story of a brand whose comma-shaped logo was purchased for only $ 35. In 1983, Nike gave logo designer Carolyn Davidson a diamond ring engraved with her famous comma and 500 shares of the prestigious company.

10 # – Christian Audigier: The true narrator

This is the story of a young designer from the South of France, very gifted in storytelling, who moved to Los Angeles in 2000 with $ 500 in his pocket. After becoming friends with celebrities, he became a multimillionaire thanks to his clothing brands directly sponsored by the stars.

11 # – Shanty cookies: Mums!

It’s the story of a young woman who for a long time did not know what to do with her life. By selling cookies with personal words written on them and thanks to a lot of offbeat marketing, she managed to sell 1 million cookies in 2017 alone.

12 # – Lacoste: In the middle of a dodge

This is the story of a talented tennis player who in the 1920s had a batch of cotton shirts made for his own use in an airy mesh to better withstand the heat on the court. A true revolution for the players of the time who were dying of heat in their unsuitable clothes.

13 # – Elon Musk: Tony Stark, but in real life

This is the story of an introverted student who was persecuted in school who, when he grew up, launched Paypal, Space X (rockets) and Tesla (electric cars), among others. He always knew how to get back in spite of several mistakes. He will now colonize Mars.

14 # – Walt Disney: Naughty Oswald!

This is the story of a company that produces animated short films for children and goes bankrupt. In 1923, Disney Brothers was awarded a contract to make 12 films. A legal issue surrounding the character of the lucky rabbit Oswald forces them to quickly create a new character: Mickey Mouse.

15 # – Deezer: Is it all legal?

This is the story of an entrepreneur who launched Blog Music in 2006, a site that offers free music listening. For obvious copyright reasons, the site closed but was reborn under the name Deezer after negotiations with SACEM. In 2015, the site had a turnover of 150 million euros.

16 # – YouTube: Did you receive my file?

This is the story of three former employees of the company PayPal, who try to send a clip by e-mail, but without success. They then envision a website that makes it very easy to share videos online. The success was instantaneous and millions of videos are watched every day around the world.

17 # – Jared Fogle: Dieting


This is the story of a 21-year-old American boy who lost 111 kg in less than a year and ate only in Subway. Jared Fogle is not the founder of Subway, but has greatly contributed to the popularization of the very famous chain of restaurants.

18 # – Alibaba: And the 40 mistakes

This is the story of a man who gathered at chess. He failed the Chinese equivalent of BAC 3 times and then passed the Harvard entrance exam 10 times. He also unsuccessfully applied for more than 30 jobs. This man is the founder of Alibaba and he is also the richest man in China.

19 # – Vogue: You’re fired!

It’s the story of a woman who was fired after 9 months as an editor at Harper’s Bazaar magazine because she did not understand the American market. After a difficult period, she went on to become the editor-in-chief of the American magazine Vogue. (1 million monthly copies)

20 # – Airbnb: Apartment mates broke

This is the story of 2 roommates who in 2007 did not roll in gold. One day, all the hotels in the city are full due to a conference. They then quickly design a website that offers beds in their apartment and collects $ 1,000 in the first week. Airbnb was born.

21 # – The Ocean Cleanup: The philanthropy

It is the story of a young man who interrupts his studies in space technology to devote himself to cleaning the oceans with a system of buoys capable of catching debris to store it in a floating tower. This system for recycling plastic in the oceans has won him several awards.

22 # – Yo: Minimalism …

It’s the story of a 16-year-old young man who invents a rather minimalist application that allows you to simply send a “Yo” to your interlocutor. This boy hit the headlines after raising $ 1.5 million on Kickstarter, the famous crowdfunding platform.

23 # – Thomas Edison: Light on all floors

This is the story of a man who gets fired from 2 jobs and is overwhelmed by being too stupid to learn anything. After 1000 failed attempts, it still finally manages to make its invention work: the bulb.

24 # – Lunii: It’s for kids only

This is the story of the crazy efforts of 4 young entrepreneurs who dream of seeing the world a little better every day and who create stories to develop children’s imagination. The children choose a hero, a frame or an object, and Lunii designs a real story based on these elements and then tells it to the child.

25 # – Flyboard Air: What! Is this thing flying?

This is the story of a former jet ski pilot, twice world champion and 7 times European champion, who designed Flyboard Air as a perfect self-taught. It is a kind of jetpack, which allows man to realize the dream of flying vertically.

26 # – KFC: The perfect conversion

This is the story of a colonel who started working at the age of 10. The rest of his life was filled with failures. After a failed business startup and then a career as a lawyer ended due to a fight, he decided to open a restaurant that offers specialties from the southern United States such as fried chicken …

27 # – Google: Great Hard Workers …

This is the story of 2 young American students who love computer science and who meet in 1995. They then work day and night on a high-performance search engine project. Despite many efforts, no one believed in their project. Today, it has become very difficult to do without Google …

28 # – Cadillac: The Adventurer

It is the story of an adventurer who in 1701 founded Fort Pontchatrain du Détroit and the parish of Saint-Anne on the site that would later become the city of Détroit. To pay homage to the adventurer who founded this city, a car company took the name Cadillac in 1902.

29 # – Auchan: The Ancestor of SEO

This is the story of a man who opened his first store in 1961 in Roubaix in the Haut-Champs district. To appear in first place in the directories, the name Auchan was retained.

30 # – Dassault: Codename Char Dassault

This is the story of Marcel Bloch, who in 1944 was deported with his family to a concentration camp for refusing to cooperate with the enemy. At the end of the war, he changed his name to Dassault, which is a reference to the pseudonym his brother used in the resistance movement. Pseudo in the code name Char d’assault.

31 # – And why not your story?

Do you enjoy this article? Do not hesitate to share it and tell the short story of your company via the comments. It would be a real pleasure for me to meet you …

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30 surprising and inspiring business stories to tell in the evening (Storytelling) via @webmarketingcom

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