Famous business owners and entrepreneurs are difficult to fit into a box. They’re ideas often drawn from their personal life experiences and the philosophies and values they hold dear. Here are a few interesting businesses stories that have their origins in the unique experiences of the respective owners.

Nicholas Berggruen

He is one of those people who was born in wealth, son of an art collector, who started out with a trust fund of $250,000 and whose net worth is running in billions now. He is famously known as the “homeless billionaire” because despite all his prosperity he didn’t own a home until 2017. Nicholas sold his apartment, which was filled with French antiques, on the 31st floor of the Pierre Hotel in Manhattan; he did the same with his house in Miami too. The irony is that he is a real estate tycoon and owns a chain of hotels. He travels a lot and he mostly stays in hotels several months in a year. When asked why he believes he doesn’t wish to bogged down by physical possessions any longer. In 2017 he forfeited this philosophy. He now owns a $40 million house perhaps with the hope to provide a steady place for his two children to grow up in.

Robert Klark Graham

Robert Klark Graham who made millions with shatterproof lenses for eyeglasses and contact lenses didn’t sit on his laurels. He then went on to founded a sperm bank called Repository for Germinal Choice for which he would tagged as a racist for the remainder of his life. In an unprecedented move he designed a lab that would receive blood from only white high-achievers to produce “super-kids”. The sperm bank is now closed but it is claimed to have produced 229 children during its 19 years of operation.

Eric Yuan

A  Chinese Internet Entrepreneur best known for being the founder and CEO of Zoom Company had his first visualization of Zoom in his college days. He used to travel ten hours in a train to meet his then girlfriend. Struggling with this long distance relationship he began to daydream about a technology that would solve this issue. It took him a while to get there. Since then he has had eight attempts to go the USA through denial of visa. It’s only in 2012 as a well-established businessman in the Silicon Valley that he managed to finally launch Zoom. The company, although is not primarily used by despondent lovers, is now used by more than 750000 companies to keep their team connected.

Sheila Lirio Marcelo

Born in a business oriented Asian family, Sheila sought inspiration for a business since a very early age. She finally found her inspiration during the struggles in her personal life. She became a young mother of two children and also had to take care of her ailing father – a typical product of the sandwich generation. While spending hours arduously in the yellow pages she realized that she could have her own startup to solve this pressing social issue. The first website of care.com was launched in 2006 and is now the largest caregiver online company in the world with a presence in 20 countries and 32.9 million members.

John Cronin

In 2016 John, the youngest son in the Cronin family wasn’t complaining about the thousand worries a kid with Down syndrome can suffer from. He was then in high school and he was clear that he wanted to work with this dad. He finally struck upon the idea of selling socks based on his own fascination for crazy socks’. John and his dad hit success early. Within the first year they shipped more than 42,000 orders and brought in $1.7 million in revenue. The customers were particularly touched by how the nearby deliveries were handed over with a personal note and a candy. Despite the success John continues to be a passionate advocate for people with Down syndrome, autism and other disabilities. John’s Crazy Socks employs almost two third of its employees with autism and Down syndrome and for every sock sold, they donate 5% to the Special Olympics.