The man who built a $1 billion firm in his basement

Will Smale, BBC News:

After a month of working “crazy hours”, Mr. Rodrigues had come up with his first fully formed idea – a software system that allowed the user to control his or her mobile phone from their laptop.

Naming his company Soti, sales of the system started to grow slowly, until 12 months later Mr Rodrigues got a phone call out of the blue from one of the UK’s largest supermarket groups.


“I don’t think they realised that they were talking to just one guy in a basement, so when the person asked to speak to someone in sales I came back on the phone with a slightly different tone.”

The little ruse worked, and the UK firm placed a “huge order” for 20,000 units.

This story is amazing to me, in how he got his start, in the fact that he built this mom and pop operation into a billion dollar enterprise, and in the stealth manner in which he did it. Impressive.