Quote: Remember when IBM first made the PC? They wanted to make their money selling hardware and service. They figured there's no money to be made in the software operating system, and gave that job to a dinky little company called Microsoft. They also figured there's nothing to be earned by making the actual microprocessors, so they pawned that off to a no-name called Intel.
How about Digital Research licensing their dos to someone in a way that Microsoft could end up with a permanent license.
Without even thinking about the original poster's question for more than a couple seconds, how about Arthur Anderson, Penn Central Railroad, Penn Square Bank (I believe it was called), all the major studios turning down "The Passion of the Christ", mid-1970's American auto. manufacturers not adapting to higher gas prices, etc.
Decca telling the Beatles that guitar bands are on the way out ...
Quote: 1975 - Lucas offers his Star Wars films first to Universal Studios, the film company that financed American Grafitti. Universal passed on Star Wars because they considered it to be an unfathomable and silly movie idea. This decision ended up costing Universal hundreds of millions of dollars. Every single studio in Hollywood passed on the project except for 20th Century Fox. Fox gave Lucas $ 10 million to make what is perhaps the most influential film in the history of cinema.
Fox also made one of the largest business blunders ever in that same deal, giving Lucas all the merchansiding rights and single-handedly achieving the double whammy of not only missing out on literally billions of dollars, but making Lucas one of the most powerful men in the film world. The deal changed everything about how a film is marketed and where the money flows from.