Fedex founder and CEO Fred Smith, a Yale graduate, once risked everything to save his company. When Fedex was still young, Smith played blackjack with the company’s last $5,000 in an effort to pay a $24,000 fuel bill. He won $27,000, enough to keep Fedex afloat for another week.
Smith’s big risk paid off, and the company has grown to success. Last year Fedex enjoyed $26.5 billion in revenue with the help of 146,000 employees worldwide. The company plans to build that revenue with $2 billion in cost cuts.
Surprisingly, Smith is not the only CEO who has risked his company on a blackjack table. Bill Gross, founder of PIMCO, also spent the early years of his company benefitting from the game. He figured out how to use his mathematical skills to count cards.
In contrast to Fedex and PIMCO, the United States Postal Service loses billions each year and plans to raise postage rates for next year.
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Bill Ringle is a CEO, former Apple exec, published author, and angel investor. Through Grow Business Now, he offers strategies and tools to elevate growth for executives and entrepreneurs from more than 46 industries. Bill has conducted nearly 200 podcast interviews on My Quest for the Best, where industry and business leaders share their secrets to success.