The Poor Boy Who Invented The Most Luxurious Car in the World

When this poor kid began tinkering with engines nobody could have guessed that he would one day create some of the most expensive cars in the world this is Frederick henry Royce born in1863in all wilton in england henry was the youngest of five children his parents james and mary ran a flower mill james had followed in his father’s footsteps but he lacked business skills profits were meager and for many years the royce family lived in poverty things got worse and in 1867 they had to file for bankruptcy hoping to carve out a better life for themselves the family moved to london by this time the four-year-old henry already had his first job a bird scarer on a local farm his pay six pence a week then in 1872 disaster struck again henry’s father passed away now all the children had to chip in to make ends meet including the nine-year-old henry he began selling newspapers and delivering telegram shenry’s early years of poverty had a profound effect on him and by the time he turned 15 years he had completed only one year of school as a young teenager he began an apprenticeship with the great northern railway works his aunt had offered him some financial support and despite not having a formal education henry grasped every opportunity to educate himself studying algebra french and electrical engineering in his free time but after three years he was forced to quit due to a lack of money after quitting his apprenticeship henry briefly worked at a tool-making company in leed sand then for the electric light and power company in london in 1882 he moved once again this time to liver pool where he continued to work for the electric light and power company his true ambition was to make engineering his full-time job however so at 22 years old he started a business with his fellow engineer friend Ernest Claremont they named it fh royce and company and for the next few years they worked around the clock to make electrical components such as doorbells and dynamos the company kept expanding and by 1894they were already making electric cranes too but henry’s interest started taking him somewhere else motor cars while henry royce plays a vital role in the rolls-royce story the brand’s name suggests there’s also another person that we shouldn’t forget and that person is charles stewart rules born in 1877 in london’s affluent berkeley square charles rolls was the youngest child oflord and lady langatak having developed a passion for engineering from very early on he went on to study mechanical engineering attrinity college in Cambridge charles knew how to stand out having gained a reputation for tinkering with engines he earned himself the nickname dirty rolls and during his studies he was the first undergraduate to own a motor car after having traveled to paris to buy a pujo feitenat the age of 18at the time this was extremely unusual as most people hadn’t even heard of cars yet after graduating in 1898 charles began working on a steam yacht and then at the london and northwestern railway he was more interested in motoring pioneering and salesmanship however and with financial support from his father he opened one of the first car dealerships in britain in 1903. he named the company cs roles and co and for the next couple of years he dedicated himself to importing and selling pujo and minerva cars business was booming and charles used the money to fund his sporting activities besides being an avid motorist pioneer and racer he was also an eager aviator and as you can guess both of these hobbies are anything but cheap unfortunately for charles however his life long passion would eventually cost him more than just his money when running his company fh royce and company henry became increasingly interested in motor cars in 1901 he decided to improve  a second-hand two-cylinder decal Ville car that he had bought but he wanted more and so he decided to build a car on his own henry had an instinctive desire for perfection and having found construction faults in the Deauville he vowed to do better by the end of 1903 he designed and built his first petrol engine and by the next year he drove his first royce10 horsepower motor car into town by now two decades had passed since henry set up the company his first car was a success and so he set out to create another one and another of the three cars that he had built heave one of his business partners Ernest Claremont and the other he sold to one of their shareholders henry Edmond sand it was this henry edmonds who would eventually arrange the meeting between rolls and royce henry edmunds was a shareholder in royce’s company and a friend of roles after having bought one of royce’s car she began boasting to roles about it at the time roles was frustrated with only being able to sell foreign imports in his company so edmunds arranged a meeting little did edmunds know that the meeting would change the future of motoring forever while rolls had always preferred three and four-cylinder cars royce’s two-cylinder vehicle made a big impression on him within minutes of seeing it he knew he had found what he was looking for he took the motor car for a drive and agreed on the spot to sell as many motor cars as royce could build the two men made an unusual duo there was not only a massive age gap but also a class in education gap for starters royce was 41 years old while roles was only 26. the young roles had enjoyed a fancy education at the prestigious trinity college whereas royce’s skills were largely self-taught and while roles had spent his young adult years racing around in his fancy cars royce had been working hard to make ends meet would they be able to see eye to eye while henry royce and charles rolls were two very different people they also made a great duo and the massive success with the cars led to the creation of the rolls-royce company in 1906 then came the launch of the six-cylinder silver ghost within a year it was hailed as the best car in the world impressive but for this they also had charles’s partner to thank creating a brand requires vision so while henry and charles were busy building and selling motor cars it was Charles’s partner Claude Johnson who took on the role of managing director he knew it was vital to expand the company’s reputation in the publicity genius that he washed orchestrated a series of stunts to promote the quietness and reliability of Rolls-Royce motor cars one of his early adverts for the 40 to50 horsepower motor car promoted it as the six-cylinder rolls-Royce not one of the best but the best car in the world with that ad Claude introduced the phase that would forever be associated with Rolls-Royce it was incredibly effective it demonstrated rolls-royce’s superior performance and it created a global demand for their world-class engineering and claude was so integral to the company’s success that he became known as the hyphen in rolls-Royce of course marketing alone will get you only so far and both henry and charles dedicated themselves to delivering the best quality possible but it was especially henry who had a knack for pushing himself to the limit when it came to work henry was renowned as a hard worker whomever ate properly unfortunately these habits severely affected his health but surprisingly he would end up outliving his business partner charles by a couple of decades over the years daredevil Charles’s interest in aviation kept growing he even tried to persuade henry to develop design for an aero engine but henry refused to continue living out his aviation dreams charles bought a right

flyer aircraft with which he made over200 flight sin 1910 he became the first person to make a non-stop double flight across the english channel but just one month later everything changed during a flying display at Bournemouth charles was killed in an air crash he was only 32 years old he became the first briton to die in a plane crash and his premature death meant the end of the short-lived rolls-royce partnership now henry would have to continue their legacy on his own henry had an innate work ethic and his innovative designs established rolls-royce’s reputation for superior engineering and quality he uncompromisingly persuaded his basic principle of establishing the best design with both the finest materials and the highest levels of craftsmanship to put it in his own words strive for perfection in everything you do take the best that exists and make it better when it does not exist design it during the first world war the company expanded into manufacturing something charles had once requested aero engines and during the next couple of decades the company did extremely well unfortunately henry kept struggling with his health and in 1993 he succumbed to digestive tract problems his death had been brought on by his early years of poor nutrition and a life time of overwork he had spent much of the last years of his life as a semi-invalid but that didn’t stop him from working though his never-failing enthusiasm and dedication to engineering prevailed and he continued to work until the very last moment literally his last sketch was made from his deathbed a few hours before he died he was 70 years old rolls-royce has remained a famous name in engineering a rolls-royce is one of the most successful luxury cars that money can buy and with over 130 dealerships spread over 40 countries the brand is known far beyond great britain currently rolls royce is owned by bmw and the brand is still primarily known for producing some of the most expensive cars in the world such as the rolls-royce cullinan ghostphantomwraith and dawntorsten muller otvos has been the ceo since 2010 and his reign has proven to be essential in the company’s success but it’s the vision of sir henry royce and sir charles rawls that truly made rolls-royce what it is today a symbol of pure and unadulterated wealth something tells me the two men would be proud had you already heard of the many people involved in rolls-royce’s history and what would you like to add to the story share it in the comments and if you enjoyed this video then take a look at our channel for more inspiring business videos