FedEx is a worldwide delivery company with headquarters in Memphis in the United States. It is one of the largest companies in the world and offers a variety of services such as overnight shipping, which was the original FedEx Express service, and other shipping and freight services. The company has more than 300,000 employees and has been named one of the top 100 companies to work for. Despite some setbacks during the global financial crisis FedEx is an extremely successful company and it reported a revenue of almost $43 billion in 2012. Let’s find out who founded this global courier company.
Who founded FedEx?
FedEx was founded in 1971 by Fred Smith as the Federal Express Corporation. It was founded in Little Rock, Arkansas, but he received little support from the local airport so he moved the operation to the Memphis International Airport in 1973. Federal Express began overnight deliveries the same year to 25 U.S. cities. After initial money troubles, including a lucky blackjack win that helped him pay his employees, Smith raised money from various sources to become the mostly highly financed company, in terms of venture capital, in U.S. history. The company experienced rapid growth in the 1980’s and in 1994 the company officially adopted the FedEx name. Today, the FedEx Express fleet has more than 640 aircraft in operation with orders for almost 90 more!
Did you know?
The idea behind the company began while Smith was at Yale University. He submitted a paper that argued the consumer society would become increasingly eager for mass produced electronics and that air transport would be needed to ship these items in a timely manner. He proposed a single company should be responsible for an entire delivery as opposed to the alternative method where cargo is often handled by multiple carriers.
The company name is synonymous with courier deliveries and is sometimes used as a verb. For example, “I’ll FedEx this document to you today”.