Mad Millennium Money
While Y2K may pose a problem for some, certain entrepreneurs are finding millennium fever to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity--literally.
- Bob's Red Mill Natural Foods Inc. in Milwaukie, Oregon, experienced a 50 percent increase in sales of bulk bags over the past six months.
- The Grain Store (http://www.grainstore.com) has reaped sales of $500,000 this year--in only its first quarter of business.
- Amazon.com's Millennium Store counts home/safety guides like Making The Best of Basics: Family Preparedness Handbook (Gold Leaf) by James Talmage Stevens among its bestsellers.
- At Lifeway Christian Resources, sales of books on prophecy and Y2K have tripled since last year.
- Brigade Quartermasters reports a 500 percent increase in sales of military MREs (Meals Ready-To-Eat), a 300 percent increase in sales of water purification and storage products, a more than 300 percent increase in self-powered radios and lanterns, and a 50 percent increase in medical and survival kits through its catalog, retail outlet and Web site since October 1998.
- Government offices and corporations like IBM, CBS, General
Motors and Pepsico are snapping up millennium desk clocks from
Countdown Clocks International Inc. (http://www.countdownclock.com).
Another 1.4 million or so consumers have purchased the clock--which
counts down the day, hour and so on to 2000. The clock comes in
customizable versions for between $6 and $30.
- While retailers are profiting, other Y2K-related entrepreneurs may soon be losing money. Courts nationwide have seen a swelling of Y2K litigation: At press time, 62 Y2K lawsuits had been filed regarding alleged date processing problems, or improper consulting or professional advice about Y2K issues.