Will you do us the honor and join our team of authors?

To write for the SohoBlog, contact us at [email protected]
(Shakespearean prose not required.)

Small Businesses That Went Huge

Companies never start at the top. Behind every big business is a smaller business that started with ambition and ideas. Some businesses had more humble roots than others. With enough dedication and business growth, some of today’s largest companies rose from obscurity. Here are a few of these small business success stories.


Founded in 1996 Alienware took the bold approach of charging more for their products than their competitors. Initially this caused the company to struggle, forcing them to scrape the most out of their $10,000 dollar start-up capital. However the company had a secret weapon: their products were all top of the line. As positive reviews began to pour in for their products, so too did customers start lining up to buy Alienware products. Business growth began to skyrocket. By 2006 Alienware was bought by Dell, where it continues to be a recognizable force in the high-end computer world.

Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

As far brewing companies go, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery had one of the most humble beginnings. In fact, when they opened their first located in 1995 they were cited as the smallest commercial brewery in the country. Due to bold experimentation, the company quickly gained a reputation for their unique brews. Orders began pouring in and after little more than a year the company had to increase production thirtyfold to keep up. Dogfish Head never stopped experimenting and continues to draw people with their unique beers. Now the company has a production output of over 75,000 barrels with business growth showing no signs of slowing down.

Whole Foods Market

When John Mackey and Rene Lawson opened their first location, they had been evicted from their apartment and forced to live in the store. Eventually the pair made bold some bold mergers that afforded them health food stores that were unusually large for the time. This novel approach and the rise of a more health conscious culture helped Whole Foods to become another of the small business success stories. Far from living in his store, John Mackey is now the CEO of one of the largest supermarket chains in the country.


Believe it or not, Mattel started out of a garage distributing picture frames. Ruth Handler, the future president of Mattel, used to create toys using leftover materials. These proved to be more popular than the frames and before long Mattel had switched focus entirely to toys. In 1959 the Barbie was released and business growth skyrocketed. Today Mattel is one of the largest toy producers in the world and amongst the biggest small business success stories.

Every small business founded on sound principles and good ideas has the potential to become the next big thing. When a business begins in a garage or starts with just a few thousand dollars in capital, the sky is the limit when it comes to business growth. Not every company can rise from nothing, but for those that do the small business success stories are all the sweeter.


Related Posts

How can small businesses promote economic growth?
It’s Not All Roses for Small Green Businesses
A juggling Act: When Banks Hit the Breaks, Small Businesses in Spain Get Creative
Tags: , , , , ,