In 1970 Fred Smith took his inherited $4 million and founded a company that he called FedEx.
The company was created based on a University paper that Smith wrote. The paper was graded a ‘C’.
At the start, it was failing. The company aimed to transport and deliver goods but in the first two years of operation, fuel costs rose so high that it was difficult for FedEx to afford their fuel.
Smith had to go to great lengths to keep the company afloat. The company was losing over $1 million a month.
Smith went to a company called General Dynamics to try to pitch FedEx. General Dynamics refused to give Smith any money.
In one instance, after a crucial business loan was denied, he had only $5,000 left in his bank account.
Then he decided to do the unbelievable.
Smith went to Las vegas with his last $5000, visited casino after casino, placing bet after bet and getting dealt hand after hand playing blackjack. He went to sleep that night thinking that the company had failed…
But the next morning he found $32,000 in his bank account. He had won and this meant he could buy fuel for the next few days. He did not spend the money he won on the various pleasures Vegas can offer. Instead he went back out to get funding and secured $11 million.
Today, FedEx earns more than £65 billion in annual revenue. As for Fred Smith, his net worth is $5.4 billion.