Famous Entrepreneurs An alphabetical listing of famous entrepreneurs with last names beginning with the letters A-F. Mary Kay Ash - Most Outstanding Woman in Business in the 20th Century The founder of Mary Kay Cosmetics created a business that has helped some half a million women fulfill their dreams of business ownership. A best-selling author and powerful motivational speaker, Lifetime Television named her the Most Outstanding Woman in Business in the 20th Century. Ben & Jerry's - The Men Behind the Ice Cream Ice cream is a sweet treat that few can resist. Although vanilla is the most popular flavor in the U.S., there are a seemingly endless number of varieties and manufacturers. One of the best- known purveyors is Ben & Jerry’s, the brand synonymous with funky flavors like Cherry Garcia and Chunky Monkey and a groovy Vermont vibe. Lorenzo Borghese: The Bachelor Prince, the Cosmetics Entrepreneur Even without a title of “prince,” Lorenzo Borghese would not fall into the category of “pauper.” Recently in the news for his appearance on ABC’s The Bachelor: Rome, Borghese is following in his grandmother’s footsteps as a cosmetics entrepreneur and has created his own line of luxury bath and grooming products – only these are for pets. Richard Branson - The Rebel Billionaire and the Ultimate Multipreneur In a recent poll, About.com readers selected Oprah Winfrey as the Most Admired Entrepreneur. While perhaps less well known outside of his homeland of England, Richard Branson wins the Editor's Choice for Most Admired Entrepreneur. Learn about this British firebrand who has succeeded perhaps most of all at "engineering a breathtaking life for himself". Coco Chanel - As Bold and Distinctive as Her Signature Fragrance Coco Chanel was one of the major innovators of 20th century fashion, introducing elements from menswear and sports apparel into women's fashion to create a distinctively simple, yet elegant style. Her signature fragrance, Chanel No. 5, was the first perfume to bear the designer's name. Launched in 1923, it is still one of the best-selling fragrances in the world. Simon Cowell – Music Mogul Millionaire Simon Cowell is best known as the obnoxious judge on the hit TV show American Idol whose cynical comments sent contestants running out the door in tears, but what most don’t know is that his work didn’t start there and most definitely won’t end there. His list of achievements is long and includes being a successful record producer and executive for the BMG UK record company to gathering wannabe entrepreneurs on his show, American Inventor. Michael Dell: Innovator of the Personal Computer Industry Michael Dell, born February 1965, started the road to success out of his University of Texas dorm room in with just $1000 and an idea in 1984. Michael Dell is both Chairman and CEO of his company with a net worth of over $30 billion. Dell sells directly to the customer so to avoid middleman mark-ups. Walt Disney - The Man Behind the Mouse Disney is one of the most recognized brands in the world, but few know as much about the man behind the Magic Kingdom, not to mention the hundreds of animated cartoons, countless feature films and endless toys that bear his name. An influential innovator and entrepreneur in the mid 20th century, Disney went from sketching a rabbit (yes, a rabbit) to running a multi-billion dollar empire. Debbi Fields - Founder of Mrs. Fields Cookies At age 20, Debbi Fields was a housewife with no business experience, but a great chocolate chip cookie recipe and a dream. Today, Mrs. Fields Cookies is one of the world's most recognizable dessert franchises, with over 600 stores in the U.S. and ten other countries. Henry Ford - Founder of Ford Motor Company and Manufacturing Assembly Line Innovator Henry Ford was not the inventor of the automobile, but his innovations in assembly-line techniques and the introduction of standardized interchangeable parts contributed to making the United States a nation of motorists and produced the first mass-production vehicle manufacturing plant. Bill Gates - Windows on Wealth Microsoft Corp. co-founder Bill Gates is perhaps the most famous entrepreneur of this era. He had the vision to predict the evolving importance of the personal computer. This allowed him to top Forbes magazine’s list of the world’s wealthiest individuals, with a 2006 estimated net worth of $50 billion. Hugh Hefner: The Ultimate Lifestyle Entrepreneur Hugh Hefner is the supreme bachelor of our time. He has forever changed our world by breaking the boundaries related to sexuality, age, and gender. He created a revolutionary magazine with naked women and great articles in a time when sexuality was not even appropriate to talk about. Howard Hughes: The Aviator, The Innovator, The Billioniare Howard Hughes was once the most talked-about entrepreneur in the world - legendary for both his bold business tactics and his outlandish personal life. The recent popular movie "The Aviator" has prompted a new interest in this fascinating entrepreneur. Wayne Huizenga Biography Wayne Huizenga is the only person in history to have founded three Fortune 500 companies, and six NYSE-traded companies. Huizenga is founder of the third largest U.S. waste disposal company, Republic Industries; the global leader in video entertainment, Blockbuster Entertainment; and the country's first and world's largest publicly-traded automotive dealership, AutoNation. He's also currently the owner of the Miami Dolphins football team. Jenna Jameson - From Porn Princess to Media Mogul Entrepreneurship may not be the first thing on your mind when you hear her name, but this is one shrewd businesswoman. She turned the business model in her industry on its head before diversifying into a wide range of other products. Her story of powerful branding, tightly controlled distribution and multiple streams of passive income contains lessons for entrepreneurs in any industry. Ingvar Kamprad - IKEA Founder and One of the World's Richest Men IKEA founder Ingvar Kamprad may now be the wealthiest man in the world. What started as a person- to-person business selling everything from pens to picture frames has grown to over 200 stores in 31 countries, employing over 75,000 people and generating over 12 billion in annual sales. Yet Kamprad still flys coach, takes the subway to work, and drives a ten-year-old Volvo. Estée Lauder - Making Beauty Into Big Business The daughter of immigrants, she is the embodiment of the American Dream. She started out selling skin creams created by her uncle, but with persistence and personality, she worked her way into the cosmetics counters of department stores. She developed a personalized selling style that put her brand at the top of the industry, with a 45% share of the cosmetics market in U.S. department stores. Harvey Mackay - "Mr. Make Things Happen" Harvey Mackay is the author of five business bestsellers, a nationally syndicated columnist, and one of America's most popular business speakers. He is also Chairman and CEO of Mackay Envelope Corporation, which he founded at age 26, and which now employees over 500 people and does $85 million a year in revenue. Adam Osborne – Creator of the First Portable Computer Adam Osborne was an entrepreneur best known as creator of the first portable computer, but was also an author who made a successful move into publishing computer books and software. Anita Roddick - Redefining Business As We Know It Anita Roddick is the founder of The Body Shop, a store that purchases outstanding natural ingredients for a line of cosmetics, helping the disadvantaged communities generate income and providing women with superb cosmetics. Donald Trump - Billionaire Real Estate Tycoon and Host of The Apprentice With a long list of accomplishments and assets in real estate development, hospitality and entertainment, the outspoken star and producer of "The Apprentice" is one of the world's most famous entrepreneurs. With his rollercoaster track record, he demonstrates one of the most important entrepreneurial traits: the ability to stand back up when you fall down. Madame C. J. Walker - First Female African-American Millionaire The daughter of former slaves, orphaned at the age of seven, Walker built a thriving beauty products business in the early 20th century, eventually employing over 3,000 people. Her hard work, honest business dealings and quality products led her to become the first self-made female African-American millionaire. Oprah Winfrey - About.com Readers' Most Admired Entrepreneur In our ongoing poll, About.com asked readers to select the entrepreneur they most admired. Was it Bill Gates? Richard Branson? Donald Trump? Nope -- Oprah Winfrey stood out head and shoulders above the rest. Read Oprah's story and some of the things that make her so admirable.
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