10 Inspiring Stories of Famous Entrepreneurs Who Started from Scratch

Famous Entrepreneurs Who Started from Scratch

Entrepreneurship is not a cakewalk. It takes hard work, dedication, and countless sleepless nights to turn an idea into a successful business venture.

But what separates the most successful entrepreneurs from the rest is their ability to persevere through challenges and failures.

We often hear success stories of famous entrepreneurs who have made it big, but we seldom hear about their humble beginnings.

In this success story article, we bring you ten inspiring stories of famous entrepreneurs who started from scratch and built empires that changed the world as we know it today.

These are tales of grit, determination, and relentless pursuit of one’s dreams – all guaranteed to inspire you on your own entrepreneurial journey!

1. Bill Gates

Bill Gates is one of the most famous entrepreneurs of our time. He is the co-founder of Microsoft, one of the world’s largest software companies.

Gates began his career as a software programmer and went on to become a successful businessman. He is now worth an estimated $81 billion.

Gates was born in Seattle, Washington in 1955. His father was a lawyer and his mother was a schoolteacher. Gates showed an early interest in computers and technology.

When he was thirteen, he enrolled in a computer programming course at his local community college.

Bill Gates

He later attended Harvard University, but dropped out after two years to start Microsoft with his friend Paul Allen.

Microsoft quickly became successful and made Gates a very wealthy man. In 1995, Gates became the richest man in the world when Microsoft went public.

He has since given away billions of dollars to charity through his foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

2. Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs is one of the most successful entrepreneurs of our time. He is the co-founder, chairman, and CEO of Apple Inc. and has changed the way we live with his innovative products.

Jobs was born in San Francisco and was adopted by Paul and Clara Jobs. He grew up in Mountain View, California and attended Homestead High School.

He then enrolled at Reed College in Portland, Oregon but dropped out after one semester. Jobs then traveled to India to study Eastern religion and philosophy before returning to California in 1974.

He started work at Atari Inc. where he met Steve Wozniak who would later become his business partner at Apple.

The two designed and built the first Apple computer in Jobs’ garage and founded Apple Computer Company in 1976.

Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs

The company became immensely successful and made Jobs a millionaire by the age of 25. In 1984, Apple released the Macintosh computer which revolutionized the personal computing industry with its graphical user interface.

Jobs was ousted from Apple in 1985 but he went on to found NeXT Inc., another successful computer company.

He also purchased The Graphics Group (later renamed Pixar) from George Lucas for $10 million which would later become a hugely successful animation studio responsible for films such as Toy Story, Finding Nemo, and Up.

In 1996, Apple bought NeXT for $429 million which brought Jobs back to the company he co-founded. He served as its CEO until his death in 2011.

Under Jobs’ guidance, Apple released the iPod, iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch. His innovative products and vision for the future of technology have made him an icon in the industry.

3. Mark Zuckerberg

Mark Zukerberg
Mark Zuckerberg

Mark Zuckerberg is the founder and CEO of Facebook, one of the world’s largest social networking platforms. He started Facebook in 2004 while he was a student at Harvard University.

Zuckerberg’s vision for Facebook was to create a platform that would connect people all over the world. Today, Facebook has over 2 billion active users and continues to grow.

Zuckerberg is a self-made billionaire with a net worth of over $60 billion. He is one of the youngest billionaires in the world and is an inspiration to many aspiring entrepreneurs.

4. Oprah Winfrey

Oprah Winfrey is one of the most iconic and influential entrepreneurs of our time. She is best known for her talk show,

The Oprah Winfrey Show, which ran for 25 years and was watched by millions of people around the world.

Oprah is also a powerful businesswoman, launching her own media company, OWN: The Oprah Winfrey Network, as well as a number of other businesses.

While Oprah is now a household name, she didn’t have an easy start in life. She was born into poverty in Mississippi and experienced a difficult childhood, including sexual abuse. Despite all of this, she went on to graduate from college and launch her career in broadcasting.

Today, Oprah is worth an estimated $3 billion and is regularly ranked among the world’s most powerful women. She is an inspiration to many people who have faced challenges in their lives and gone on to achieve great things.

5. Jeff Bezos

Jeffrey Preston Bezos is an American technology entrepreneur, investor, and philanthropist. He is the founder, chairman, and chief executive officer of Amazon.com, Inc., which is a multinational technology company based in Seattle, Washington.

Bezos was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on January 12, 1964. His mother, Jacklyn Gise Jorgensen, was a teenager at the time of his birth.

His father, Ted Jorgensen, was a bike shop owner. When Bezos was four years old, his parents divorced and he moved with his mother to Houston, Texas.

He attended River Oaks Elementary School in Houston from fourth to sixth grade. As a child, he showed an interest in science and technology. He loved to read and teach himself how to build things like electric circuits and computers.

In 1968, Bezos’ mother remarried Miguel “Mike” Bezos, a Cuban immigrant who had fled to the United States during the Cuban Revolution.

Jeff Bezos
Jeff Bezos

The family moved to Miami, Florida, where Mike worked as an engineer for Exxon Mobil Corporation.

Jeff graduated from Miami Palmetto Senior High School in 1982. He then attended Princeton University where he studied electrical engineering and computer science

6. Henry Ford

Henry Ford was one of the most famous entrepreneurs of his time. He started out with nothing and built a massive empire.

He is best known for his work in the automobile industry, but he also had a huge impact on other industries as well. Ford was a true visionary and changed the world forever.

7. Walt Disney

Walt Disney is one of the most successful entrepreneurs of all time. He started his career as a cartoonist and went on to co-found one of the most successful entertainment companies in the world.

Walt Disney was a visionary leader and creative genius. He had a clear vision for his company and its products.

Walt Disney
Walt Disney

He was also an excellent communicator and motivator. He inspired his employees to work hard and be creative.

Walt Disney was a risk taker. He was not afraid to try new things or take chances. This helped him create some of the most memorable characters and stories in history.

8. Estee Lauder

In 1946, Estée Lauder and her husband, Joseph, started their company with four products and a simple mission: to make women feel beautiful. Today, that mission continues through Estée Lauder’s world-class products and services, which are available in over 150 countries.

From its early days as a small cosmetics company to its present status as a global beauty leader, Estée Lauder has always been driven by the same passion for innovation and excellence. Here’s the story of how one woman’s vision led to a global empire.

Estée Lauder was born in New York City in 1908 to Hungarian immigrants who ran a successful bakery business.

As a child, she was fascinated by the power of makeup and would often experiment with her mother’s cosmetics.

After finishing high school, she married Joseph Lauder and they soon had two sons. In order to help support her family during the Great Depression, Estée began selling her homemade cosmetics door-to-door. She quickly developed a loyal following among socialites and Hollywood celebrities.

In 1946, Estée and Joseph officially founded the Estée Lauder Company with just four products: cleansing oil, skin lotion, crème pack (a face mask), and perfume oil.

They placed great importance on quality ingredients and luxurious packaging—a commitment that remains to this day.

In 1953, Estée launched her first national advertising campaign with the now-famous tagline “Don’t forget your lips!”

By the 1960s, the company had established a presence in 25 countries and launched iconic products such as Clinique, Aramis, and Origins.

Today, the Estée Lauder brand has become synonymous with luxury, quality, and innovation. Its product offerings range from cosmetics to skin care, fragrances to makeup tools. The company also owns other beauty brands that are popular around the world.

Estée Lauder was a true trailblazer who forever changed the beauty industry. Her commitment to excellence continues to inspire people everywhere to look and feel their best.

9. Michael Dell

Michael Dell is the founder and CEO of Dell Technologies, one of the world’s leading providers of technology solutions.

He started the company in 1984 with $1,000 and a vision to revolutionize the way people use computers.

Today, Dell Technologies is a $74 billion company with more than 145,000 employees worldwide. Michael Dell is one of the most successful entrepreneurs of our time, and his story is an inspiration to anyone who dreams of starting their own business.

As a young man, Michael Dell was fascinated by computers and how they worked. He taught himself how to code and build computers, and by the age of 19 he had started his own computer company called PC’s Limited.

Dell’s big break came in 1985 when he was able to secure a contract to sell computers to IBM. This deal gave him the capital he needed to grow his business, and by 1988 PC’s Limited had become one of the largest computer manufacturers in the world.

In 1992, Michael Dell took his company public, making him one of the youngest CEOs ever to do so. Since then, Dell Technologies has continued to grow and innovate, becoming a global leader in providing technology solutions for businesses and consumers alike.

Michael Dell is a true pioneer in the world of technology. His story is proof that anyone can achieve their dreams if they are willing to work hard and take risks. He is an inspiration to all who aspire to build a successful business.

10. Richard Branson

Richard Branson is one of the world’s most famous entrepreneurs, and he started from scratch. He dropped out of school at age 16 and started a magazine called Student.

He then started a record label, which led to him starting Virgin Records. From there, he grew the Virgin Group into the conglomerate it is today, with businesses in aviation, hospitality, entertainment, health care, and more.

Richard Branson
Richard Branson

Branson is known for his risk-taking and his willingness to fail; he once said, “If you don’t risk anything, you risk even more.”

This has served him well in business; he has had many successes, but also some high-profile failures. However, he has always bounced back and continued to grow hisVirgin empire.

Branson is an inspiration to entrepreneurs everywhere who are willing to take risks and follow their dreams.


We hope these 10 inspiring stories of famous entrepreneurs who started from scratch has shown that no matter who you are or where you come from, with perseverance and dedication, anything is possible.

These success stories prove that it’s never too late to start a business, and the potential rewards can be tremendous.

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Use their example as motivation to take the leap into entrepreneurship—you may just be surprised what you can achieve!