Agricultural Economics Department


Date of this Version

June 2003


Published in Cornhusker Economics, 06/04/2003. Produced by the Cooperative Extension, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Department of Agricultural Economics, University of Nebraska–Lincoln.


New business formation is key to any society expecting economic growth and industry innovation. Giant corporations of today were once start-up companies more than 25 years ago. Apple Computer, started in 1978, had $8 billion in sales in 2000 and employed approximately 95,000 people. Likewise, Microsoft Corporation, started in 1976, is the world’s largest software company with more than $23 billion in sales. Other well-known companies such as Federal Express, Walmart, ConAgra and were once fledgling businesses that revolutionized industries.