Hamdi Ulukaya is a true rags to riches story – a beautiful example of the American Dream come to life.
He founded Chobani, a $4Bln company and he personally has an estimated net worth of $1.8 billion.
So, who is he?
– Hamdi Ulukaya was born in 1972 in Turkey.
– Moved to the US in 1994 to further his studies.
– During a visit, his father persuaded him to import the family’s feta cheese from Turkey. The imported cheese became popular and Hamdi subsequently opened a small wholesale feta cheese plant called Euphrates in New York.
– He then decided to make an alternative to American-style yogurt, which he believed was too sugary, watery, and artificial.
– This eventually became Chobani.
– Now Chobani has approximately 3,000 employees and brings in about $1 billion in revenue.
– Ulukaya received many awards and recognition over the years. Specifically:
– Was selected from 47 global candidates to be the World Entrepreneur of the Year in 2013, an award begun by Ernst & Young.
– Honorary doctorates from several universities.
– TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World in 2017.
– One of the 100 greatest business minds as part of the Forbes’ centennial celebration.
When Hamdi migrated to the US, he didn’t speak a word of English. He didn’t let the fact hold him back. Instead, he was determined to live the American dream. He considers America his true home.
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