There is no universal way to become rich. Sometimes even the most stupid ideas can become really successful, while ingenious ones bring nothing to their creators.
Bright Side would like to introduce you to 13 people who earned their millions thanks to their creativity, observation and simple luck.
1. Joy Mangano, The Miracle Mop
Joy Mangano invented the Miracle Mop, a self-wringing plastic mop, that can be easily wrung out without getting its users’ hands wet. She sold her invention at trade shows and by 1995 she earned her first million. Since then, Joy has invented and patented more than 100 different useful things such as Huggable Hangers, Forever Fragrant, The Clothes It All Luggage System and many others. In 2015, her biopic was released starring Jennifer Lawrence.
2. Guy Laliberté, Cirque du Soleil
Guy Laliberté used to be a street artist. One day he had the idea to establish his own circus, which is how the now famous Cirque du Soleil came to be in 1984, known for its terrific shows. This idea brought Guy a few billion dollars and allowed him to become one of the first space tourists.
3. Richard T. James, the slinky
It’s impossible to imagine the nostalgic 90s without a rainbow slinky. It was invented by Richard T. James in 1943. He used to work as a naval engineer and constructed devices for naval vessels. Once a spring accidentally fell off the floor and walked which gave him an idea for his big and successful business. In the beginning, the slinky was produced with black metal but later they started producing it with rainbow-colored plastic.
4. Gary Dahl, Pet Rock
Pet Rock’s success originated from a simple joke. The future founder of the company decided that it would be funny to have a rock as a pet! This idea became a silver bullet in 1975 and brought Gary millions. The rocks were sold in cartons with holes and they sat on straw nests. The instructions explained how to take care of the rock, how to walk it and what to do if it got sick or died… Pet Rock became popular again in 2012.
5. Byron Reese, SantaMail
Byron established his company SantaMail in 2001. He found an address in the North Pole (a town in Alaska) and sends letters to children from Santa Claus by their parents’ request. The stamp on the letter could convince even the most skeptical people that the letter is really sent by Santa. The service costs $10.
6. Roni Di Lullo, Doggles
Roni got the idea to create Doggles in 1997 when he noticed that his dog squinted in bright light. After thorough research, a perfect anatomic construction was developed to fit dogs’ heads and protect their eyes. Currently, Roni earns millions and continues to invent new things for pets.
7. Ken Ahroni, Lucky Break Wishbone
There is a tradition to break fork bones of a turkey on Thanksgiving day. The one who gets the bigger part of it is said to have their wish come true. Ken Ahroni decided that everyone should make a wish during the celebration and established the production and distribution of wishbones for $3 a piece. By 2006, Ahroni became a millionaire.
8. Jonah White, Billy Bob Teeth
In 1993, Jonah White got the idea to create fake teeth that could transform everyone into Billy Bob. This funny idea eventually became a big company which has sold 20 million pieces of Billy Bob teeth in different designs. By the way, popular pacifiers with the teeth design are also sold by this company.
9. Joe Pellettieri, Big Mouth Billy Bass
The funny Big Mouth Billy Bass which attaches to a wall as decoration was invented by Joe Pellettieri in 1998. The fish is attached to a board and moves and sings songs when you press the button. Billy has a few songs in his repertoire and has become an element of current pop culture. You can even find him in different movies.
10. Gary Clegg, a blanket with sleeves
Gary decided to solve the problem of not wanting to take your hands out from under a blanket and invented a blanket with sleeves. That’s how the Slanket company emerged in 2005. Up to now, the company has sold millions of Slankets which cost $35 a piece. You can find your favorite color Slanket on their official site.
11. Alex Craig, Potato Parcel
Alex Craig invented the Potato Parcel Service in 2015. You can buy a potato on their website and choose an inscription of 100-140 symbols. The company engraves the words and sends the potato to an address anonymously. The service costs $10 and there are many customers who want to buy it, making Craig a millionaire.
12. Jason Sadler, I Wear Your Shirt
Jason Sadler is the founder of the I Wear Your Shirt company, an idea for which he got back in 2005. He used T-shirts to advertise businesses and wore them for a certain price. In the beginning, it was $1 per day and he was the only one who wore them. Then he hired more people to wear them. Doing this, he earned 5 million dollars, closed his company and moved forward with a different business.
13. Philip Ozersky, a baseball
Sometimes it just so happens that millions come into your hands accidentally — it’s all about being in the right place at the right time. This is exactly what happened to Philip Ozersky. He was at a baseball game when Mark McGwire blasted his 70th homer of the year to set the single-season home run record. The hit was a line drive into the left-field luxury boxes; the ball bounced out into Philip’s hands. The ball was auctioned off for a record $3.05 million. Philip spent part of this money to buy a house for his father and donated some of it to charity.
Which story did you find the most fascinating? Tell us in the comments below.