12 famous companies' surprising beginnings

Nokia and rubber boots
Nokia and rubber boots

Quick, when you think of Nokia, what immediately comes to mind? Cell phones, right? Most of us would be surprised to know that Nokia didn't start out in the mobile phone business. In fact, its roots go back to 1865 when it was involved in the "original" communications technology: paper. Yes, Nokia began as a wood pulp mill in southern Finland. It then entered the rubber business in 1898 (even making rubber boots!) and it wasn't until 1968 that it entered the mobile business.

But Nokia isn't the only company to have such a story. Here we take a look at 11 other popular companies that all have one thing in common: Surprising beginnings.

Originally published