April 2019 HTSAAIL™ of the Month - Milton Hershey
A Sweet Taste of Failure.
Did you know that only about 100 years ago, chocolate was a luxury item and only consumed by the wealthy? An ambitious entrepreneur by the name of Milton Hershey was about to shake up the entire chocolate industry but only after numerous failures in the industry.
Our HTSAAIL of the Month for April is Milton Hershey.
Milton Hershey was born in the small farming community of Derry Township, Pennsylvania in 1857. His father was a dream chaser that always looked out for any big opportunity but his major flaw was not having the ability to be persistent and work consistently towards that opportunity. This lack of persistence led to Milton’s mother to instill a hard work ethic and persistence.
At the age of 14, Milton Hershey dropped out of school and began working as an apprentice for a master confectioner. During this apprenticeship, Milton fell in love with the making of candy and other confectionary delights.
4 years later, Milton borrowed $150 from his aunt to open up his very own candy shop in Philadelphia. For 5 years, Milton consistently worked hard at getting the store up and running, but finally had to declare bankruptcy after this store would not take off.
Milton decided to head out west to meet with his father again and began working for another candy maker. In his new job he learned the skills of caramel making and secret to using fresh milk to produce the best quality caramel. With his newly learned skills, Milton decided to open up a candy store in Chicago which failed and then another candy store in New York City which also failed.
After numerous failures in opening up and running candy stores, Milton Hershey ended back up in Lancaster, PA. With the financial support of his business partner and aunt, Milton was able to continue with his caramel making which he made during the day and sold in the evening with a pushcart.
During one of his pushcart sales he sold his caramel to a English importer who was very impressed with the quality and freshness of the product and decided to place a large order with Milton. This large quantity order allowed Milton to pay off loans and debts and also fund the starting capital for the Lancaster Caramel Company.
After 4 years of constant failure, Milton Hershey was able to grow his Lancaster Company to a million dollar company. During his time running the caramel company, Milton learned the various new ways to manufacture chocolate that sparked his interest once again.
After selling his Lancaster Caramel Company for $1 million and retaining the rights to manufacture chocolate, Milton decided to open up another factory to mass produce milk chocolate. He figured out that with the right ingredients he would be able to saturate the market with chocolate. In just a few short years of launching, Milton Hershey was able to do just that. One of his biggest winning ideas was in 1907: The Hershey’s Kiss. Chocolate and Hershey became synonymous and the ability to consume chocolate could be enjoyed by the masses.
Milton Hershey’s Failures in the Candy Industry: 4
Number of Times Milton Hershey Gave Up: 0
Lancaster Caramel Company Sold For : $1 Million
The Hershey Chocolate Company Revenue in 2018: $7.8 Billion