Entertaining real-life stories with valuable lessons on how to succeed in business and in life
Entertaining and compelling real-life stories. The author is successful business, real estate, and media entrepreneur Dick Kazan.
Published on July 19th, 2016
Soichiro Honda: Who rose from building motorbikes in a shack to become a global car titan.

Luma Mufleh
Soichiro Honda  
Photo: asme.org

Today Honda is one of the biggest vehicle companies in the world, producing millions of cars, trucks and motorcycles and employing more than 200,000 people.

But the company began because Japan had been devastated by World War ll; facing poverty, food shortages and joblessness.

As a result, Mr. Honda (1906 - 1991), who was married and the father of three, was scrambling to make a living to feed his family.

So what did he do?

(Story continues from "Read More")

Like so many other Japanese people, Mr. Honda was desperate for transportation and gasoline was expensive and in short supply,

As a result, he hit upon a novel idea, an idea that became his passion.

One thing in plentiful supply was surplus military motors, and with his mechanical skills Mr. Honda realized he could modify tiny motors and attach them to bicycles.

He took a lawnmower sized motor, attached it to his bike and in that moment, the first motorbike had come into being.

People saw him drive his motorbike to get groceries and they too wanted a motorbike to buy food and other necessities, wherever those goods were available.

But starting a motorbike company would cost money, and money was in short supply. Would this be the end of his passion?

No, because Mr. Honda refused to give up. Soon he hit upon another novel idea.

He sent letters to Japan's 18,000 bike shop owners asking them to invest in his company. 3,000 of them said yes, and sent money.

Mr. Honda used that money to open his modest wooden shack motorbike manufacturing facility and began making motorbikes.

The good news was his investors owned bike shops that could market the bikes he produced.

The bad news was the motorbikes he initially made were too bulky and didn't sell well.

Learning from this experience, Mr. Honda built lighter weight motorbikes with smaller motors.

Though the motorbikes were small, they sold big, eventually helping to get the nation back on its feet as people in vast numbers now had affordable and reliable transportation.

The Honda company was on its way to becoming an enormous success.

Mr. Honda is a great example of what can be achieved despite seemingly impossible odds if one person is determined enough to pursue his or her passion.

Editor's Note: The sources for today's story are, "The Inspiring Story of Honda" by Tony Robbins , as well as The New Yotk Times and Wikipedia, world.honda.com/ and statista.com.

In the next KazanToday: The woman who started the "Meet A Muslim" program to ease the fears of non-Muslims.

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