This 7 days the tech planet missing John Warnock, the co-creator of the PDF and co-founder of Adobe. His primary idea for what would finally grow to be Adobe PostScript was at first turned down by Xerox.

And this is not unheard of. In the startup ecosystem, a good deal of wonderful concepts are turned down. We listen to this from founders consistently — dozens or even hundreds of ‘no’ responses in advance of eventually hitting a ‘yes’.

And it is even transpired to issues that we just can’t fathom ever currently being turned down, from people today who are now worshipped in the company environment.

Right here are a couple you may possibly or may well not know about.


In 1999 the founders of Google, Larry Web page and Sergey Brin, needed to market the firm to Excite CEO George Bell for $1 million. Even immediately after remaining talked down to $750,000, Bell rejected the give.

Just 5 months later the pair raised US$25 million. Today Alphabet Google’s market cap has eclipsed the billion mark, coming in at US$1.62 trillion.

Ring Doorbell

The Ring Doorbell commenced its everyday living as Doorbot, which was crowdfunded back in 2013. A yr later the founder of Ring, Jamie Siminoff, took the online video doorbell process on the US iteration of Shark Tank. Smininoff questioned for US$700,000 from the sharks but was turned down.

By 2018 the firm experienced exploded in level of popularity and was acquired by Amazon for in between US$1.2 to US$1.8 billion.


Canva co-founder Melanie Perkins has been upfront about the simple fact that the organization was rejected by future investors around 100 times — and that their 1st pitch deck was “pretty terrible”.

However, the founders thought in the plan, and now Canva is a person of the most broadly made use of layout resources in the earth.

Ten several years later on the system has raised $572.6 million throughout 15 funding rounds and has a market place cap of all over $24 billion.


Airbnb in the same way noticed its fair share of rejections.

Again in 2008, it was attempting to raise US$150,000 at a US$1.5 million valuation. As we claimed in this article, five VCs turned down the startup and two didn’t reply at all.

Speedy forward and as of  2020, Airbnb has raised US$6.4 billion in capital throughout 30 funding rounds with a US$80.26 billion industry cap.

Nike Air

Back again in 1977, a previous aerospace engineer named M. Frank Rudy approached Adidas with the idea for a shoe. It contained an ‘air sole’ that promised far more cushioning and assistance — some thing that would revolutionise the operating shoe.

Adidas turned down the plan, and when Rudy introduced the thought to Nike, co-founder Phil Knight almost did the same, dismissing it as “comic e book stuff”.

Even so, right after taking a prototype for a operate, Knight changed his intellect. 5 years later on Nike released the Air Power 1 model. To this day it continues to be one of the most popular sneakers in the world and sells tens of millions of pairs each and every yr.