9 best inspirational business success stories

Today we’re going to take a look at the 9 best inspirational business success stories that started as side hustles.

Side hustles have been apart of everyone’s life from time immemorial. These hustles can take shape o personal small businesses run on the weekend, or pet projects that are driven by personal preferences like hobbies.

Not everybody has the host to quit their jobs and start a business from day one. Most people like to start low and build upon the success they get in the long run.


Furthermore, nowadays, businesses can be operated from anywhere. if you have a smartphone, then you can develop a dream and an excellent data connection, then you can spin your idea to pure gold.


Sometimes these small businesses might have their origins as pet projects but they scale up to the big global business they are today. Many times success comes as a result of hitting the market at the right time.

Additionally, it’s an end product working as intended, and frequently there is some little luck mixed inside.
Also, when you have a close view at some of the current best and most prominent companies, you’ll realize that they started from humble backgrounds as one way of the proprietor to attempt a new thing, get a solution to an irritating problem, then get a couple of bucks when doing it.


However, the following are nine international businesses that began out as side hustles or hobbies, together with their source stories.


1. APPLE Inc

number one on this list of the 9 best inspirational business success stories that started as side hustles


They apple story has been told a thousand times but it is one of the inspirational stories ever in business. Two kids seemingly who did not have any idea of what they were about to do

Hippie, unshowered shaggy Steve Jobs and his geek friend Wozniak Steve met at HP where they worked summer jobs in the 1970s. They were part of the homebrew computer club and they aspired to built personal computers during their spare time.


Later Wozniak worked at Hewlett Packard, and Jobs worked in Atari and having a close look at both of them when they finished the Apple I in 1976, one could not guess that after five years they’d be finishing up on one of the biggest IPOs at that time.


Apple’s value and fame have not wavered, they had a low point in the late 1980s soon after Jobs was fired. In 1997, he to an ailing Apple and managed to take it back to profitability.


The company has played a crucial role in branding methodology and creating a cult business. They are valued over a trillion dollars today, a behemoth.


2. Under Armour

number two on this list of the 9 best inspirational business success stories that started as side hustles.


Around the mid-1990s, Kevin Plank, a student from Maryland University, a football player, was irritated by the sweat on his football shirts during practice. The sweat was a distraction and hindrance to performance.

Therefore, in 1996, Kevin Plank developed an athletic undershirt personally that remained dry even when he went to practice and workouts.

This worked adequately, and he thought of producing them and selling to other players.
This move brought about a side hustle. Plank drove down and up the East Coast to the next year, selling the shirts from the back of his vehicle. The business picked up, and soon he moved from producing individual sales to manufacturing team sales.


After two years, Under Armour shifted from Plank’s trunk to a legitimate headquarters and warehouse.

Currently, his Plank’s business is a popularly known brand globally, receiving up to $4 billion revenues every year.


3. Houzz

Number three on this list of the 9 best inspirational business success stories that started as side hustles.


The famous home improvement has many design ideas for any home’s exterior and interior. It is very popular with home improvement specialists.

This serves as a search for home improvement specialists, a customer forum, and a shopping gateway, and many other things, to so many people. It’s incredible to know that such a widely used site started from a humble background.


In 2009, Houzz’s inventors, the wife and husband team of Adi Tatarko and Alon Cohen, were in a constant struggle with their house improvement business. They came up with a website to request for inputs and look for good contractors.

The website helped their business improve tremendously. The following year, their small side hustle changed due to demand, and an iPad application was released.


After a few years, Houzz had a global presence, and in 2016, the company had acquired up to 49 million monthly users globally. By the midpoint of 2017, Houzz was worth of $4 billion.


4. Etsy

Number four on this list of the 9 best inspirational business success stories that started as side hustles.


If you want handmade, creative, craft, or unique, perhaps you’ve taken a look at the Etsy products on sale.

Etsy began back in 2005 as a little marketplace for artisans to sell their wares, and as it changed, many people who needed to sell and buy one-of-a-kind goods.


After some years, the company has continued to a path of firsts becoming a global leader in hand made unique goods. A business model that nobody thought could be scalable made history and is continuing to inspire.


5. Groupon

Number five on this list of the 9 best inspirational business success stories that started as side hustles.


Have you seen group discounts being offered online by businesses online? If yes, then you have seen the idea behind the multibillion-dollar company Groupon.

This company began as a way for inventor Andrew Mason to get some the upper hand and get a cell phone contract terminated. The thoughts were to get people to come together and accomplish a task.


In 2006, the concept was brought to fruition with the founding of a tool called the point.

Mason got moderate success with “the point” the side hustle but initially wasn’t yet a global industry. Once he realized that most of the people using his tool were using it to saving, he pivoted to group saving on goods and services.

The Point changed to Groupon in 2008 November and placed its focus on providing group discounts on services, entertainment, and food.


6. HubSpot

Number six on this list of the 9 best inspirational business success stories that started as side hustles.


Founders Dharmesh Shah and Brian Halligan were serving as independent contractors that help startups with their marketing plans.

They were graduates of MIT who were interested in sharing their marketing srategies.

Shah had a blog that had a wide readership, but the founders thought they could go an extra step ahead.
In 2006, the two joined forces and came up with HubSpot and began working with small companies. Their initial successes paved the way to medium and massive companies soon, and currently, Hubspot is among the most respected digital marketing services.


In 2016, HubSpot generated over $270 million income, and the numbers seem to grow continually.


7. Instagram

Number seven on this list of the 9 best inspirational business success stories that started as side hustles.


Sometimes it’s difficult to imagine how the well-known photo-sharing app began as a small side hustle. However, that’s how Instagram started in 2010. Mike Krieger and Kevin Systrom came up with a check-in app more like Foursquare and included photography from the smartphone cameras that were gaining popularity.


Later on, the two registered a company and named it Burbn, began from a desk that was rented within a shared office during the weekends and in the evenings when they weren’t working at their day jobs.


Initially, it didn’t work well: Foursquare was famous, and mobile photos sharing was moving off the ground. Later, the two changed the company’s name to Instagram and shifted the focus to mobile photography, and immediately the app started taking off.


After two years, before Instagram had made any profit, the company was acquired by Facebook for $ 1 billion.


8. Udemy

Number eight on this list of the 9 best inspirational business success stories that started as side hustles.


One of the best uses for online connectivity today is education. However, the Udemy inventors Gagan Biyani, Oktay Caglar, and Eren Bali were not looking for anything extraordinary when they started the platform in 2010.


Initially, the platform was not very viable, starting without any courses or users. funders were not providing the needed capital for the fledgling hustle.

But even though the investors did not like it, instructors and students alike could see the benefit of carrying out education online.


Udemy soared by bounds and leaps, providing more than 2,000 programs and 10,000 users in the early days. Currently, the platform has more than 55,000 classes in areas starting from foreign languages to computer skills.

Nowadays, Udemy has more than 10 million users being the world’s affordable online education platform.


9. Khan Academy

Number nine on this list of the 9 best inspirational business success stories that started as side hustles.


In 2004, before the academy even became a side hustle, it was just an option for Sal Khan to offer long-distance learning to one of the family members.

This worked out well, and soon, other family members got some interest in this.

He made the tutorials public, and soon, more people, including strangers, watched the short videos that Khan posted with explanations. They realized this was helpful and requested for more.


Later, he developed a website that involved free online courses and changed it to a non-profit organization. At the moment, the Khan Academy has more than 40 million visitors monthly.

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