It is interesting, but even some of the biggest and seemingly most successful businesses in the world have at their down points. The thing is, when a company hits rock bottom, it can actually be the foundational stepping stone to their turnaround. With this in mind, DotCom Magazine brings to you, what we feel, in our opinion are the top 5 corporate turnaround success stories. We certainly think these are among the most interesting anyway.
Evernote is an app that was designed for making and organizing lists and taking notes and was founded by Stepan Pachikov in 2008. However, he decided it was best to shut down the company because he felt it would never really take off. Just before it officially shut down though, an investor from overseas put forward a promise of $500,000 to give Evernote the chance to be the success it could be, and that's exactly what happened. Despite all of this, Evernote has become the biggest and most popular organization and note-taking software and has generated hundreds of millions from funding and has attracted in excess of 20m users.
Netflix began life in 1997 when it was founded by Marc Randolph and Reed Hastings to combat against late return fees for rentals of videos. The company originally didn't turn any kind of profit until 2003 though, earning profit of $6.5m on revenue of up to $272m. In 2005, business was thriving though, Netflix had started shipping millions of DVDs out every day. Netflix then saw a massive increase until '11 when CEO Hastings came up with the idea of splitting the subscriptions users could use into two specific categories at a higher price, unlimited streaming and DVD rentals.
That saw the company losing more than 800,000 subscribers and the value of its stock dropped 77% in about four months. While he has been praised for making that decision now, at the time the company and the man himself suffered blows to their reputation. It then got worse. Over the course of a year, the company suffered incredible losses, but was able to come back. Perhaps the best move Netflix made was Netflix Originals tv shows and movies, starting with House of Cards in 2013.
From January 2018 onwards, Netflix has accumulated over 120m subscribers and generated $12B every year.
In the beginning when it was first launched Airbnb struggled to get enough investors, causing Joe Gebbia and Brian Chesky, the owners, to design and build customized cereal boxes to source funds. The created Cap'n McCains and Obama-Os, taking inspiration from John McCain and Barack Obama. It took two months for them to raise more than $30,000 and then received an invitation to a training session with Incubator that also gave them funding of $20,000. It was then that the company grew and the website had 2,500 listings and 10,000 users the next year. Now it has more than 4m listings and an annual revenue of $2.5b.
Founded by Alexis Ohanian and Steve Huffman, in 2005, Reddit had no visitors which forced the owners to make up several faked accounts and create fake discussions until anyone started visiting for real. It eventually became incredibly popular and was then bought up by Conde Nast, the owner of the New Yorker, Vogue and Vanity Fair to name a few. As recorded in February this year, it has just about 550m users and is 4th in the most visited sites listing in the US and 6th worldwide.
Founded originally in 1971, FedEx was started by Frederick Smith who used $4m he received in inheritance money and around $80m more in investments and loans. He proposed the idea originally through a writing assignment for a class he was taking at Yale, and got a C grade for it. the company accumulated a lot of debt in its first year thanks to the increase in fuel prices and was teetering on going bankrupt. When he only had $5,000 left, he took it to Las Vegas and managed to transform $5,000 into $27,000 and save the company.