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The World of Weird and Wacky Investments

Some people are crazy and make crazy investments, or maybe we should just call them alternative investments. Some make money, some don’t. But they’re all fun, and it’s always good to peruse some of the more interesting investment portfolios. Read on… and if you know of any wackier examples of alternative investments, please send your suggestions in to us.

Chicken Feces

Chicken Feces


Yep that’s chicken sh**, and apparently the returns aren’t chicken feed. Nua Advisors, a wealth management firm from near Boston, reported of an unnamed individual investor who came to them with an idea of using his early retirement savings to start up a business of selling chicken feces to fertilizer manufacturers, which actually seems reasonable enough. However, the Department of Defense is arguing that chicken feces is used as a component in fuel for missile launchers, so they cannot…

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Ostrich Eggs

Ostrich Eggs


One man had the crazy idea of investing in ostriches and gaining returns by selling the eggs. However, he soon realized that ostriches don’t lay that many eggs and so he’d have to sell each one for around $100,000 per egg (OK we made that number up), and also that he didn’t have enough money to buy a plot of land to keep the ostriches on. Apart from that it was a great idea. By which we mean that it was just a crazy business idea that quite rightly never got off the ground.

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Musical Instruments Used By Stars

Musical Instruments Used By Stars


This crazy idea is simple and genius, but we cannot disclose the investor’s name. One man bought a guitar, got a famous rock star (who happened to be his friend) to play it in a concert and then sign it, and the investor then sold it for around a 500% profit. Clever, if not a little manipulative.

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Beauty School

Beauty School


One investor sunk all of his money into a beauty school, and a great idea it was too. It seems that there are many girls (and a few boys) out there who want to learn how to style and make others beautiful. His initial $300,000 investment is now worth $2.9 million.

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Christmas Tree Farm

Christmas Tree Farm


The idea of having a piece of land which is also producing an income is a very attractive idea. Many people have bought a bit of land where growing conditions are just right, planted some trees and then sold them seasonally. Overheads are low, workers are only needed seasonally, and all you have to look out for are fires and pests. Nice. A very sane crazy business idea and model.

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Organic Spouts

Organic Spouts


One man came out of his 401(k) and invested the lot in an organic sprout growing farm, growing all different types of organic sprouts without using any soil, and which is now valued at $550,000. Not such a crazy business idea and it’s considered a growing industry.

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Horses and Cows

Horses and Cows


One man, Rajeev Kotyan, has made lots of money by investing in animals. He took his money out of his IRA and invested in a business which purchased dressage horses from Europe for competitions in the United States, and received returns ranging from 23% to 76%. He also invested in cows, loaning a farmer that he met at the airport the funds that he needed in order to buy some cows, renting them out to the farmer until the said farmer bought them outright 5 years later. Kotyan made a 25% return on…

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Wine

Wine


You can make a lot of money by investing in wine. You just have to buy at an early time when prices are usually lower, find good places (with climate control) for storage, buy the best vintages and then hold on to them for a while. Holding on without drinking is the hard part and why this is probably considered a somewhat crazy idea by many.

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Sports Memorabilia

Sports Memorabilia


Many people have made money out of this not so crazy business idea, especially when they concentrate on autographed items, items from the 19th Century (since not many have actually survived), or any items which are linked to legends. And some stuff is worth a fortune; Babe Ruth’s bat sold for $1.25 million, as did Paul Henderson’s 1972 Summit Series jersey (from when Canada’s ice hockey amateurs beat the Russians at their own game), Sheffield FC’s (the first official football club in…

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Comic Books

Comic Books


Old comic books are worth their weight in gold. Actually they’re worth more than that. The reason is because most kids would read them and then throw them away or pass them on to their friends, so any copies are rare, and any copies in mint condition are even rarer than rare. A Superman No 1 edition went for $1.5 million. It’s all about scarcity, condition, and things like having no missing pages or other defects. Books are also a good investment if you find a rare old one in good…

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Shoes with Wheels

Shoes with Wheels


You’ve seen them, we’ve all seen them. Little booties with little wheels on the bottom and little flashing lights on the sides, kids whizzing around having lots of fun and surprisingly not bumping into everything in sight, even in crowded shopping malls. Yet that idea had to be pitched at some point, and it actually sounds like one of them somewhat crazy inventions, a lot crazy actually, yet it made a lot of money for Heelys, Inc.

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Female Condoms

Female Condoms


Seems so obvious, why should condoms be just for men? Even though it just seemed like another one of those crazy ideas, the Female Health Company made them and now distribute them in over 100 countries as a means of women preventing pregnancy and sexually-transmitted diseases. Apparently a lot of men don’t care so much.

Read More

Chicken Feces

Yep that’s chicken sh**, and apparently the returns aren’t chicken feed. Nua Advisors, a wealth management firm from near Boston, reported of an unnamed individual investor who came to them with an idea of using his early retirement savings to start up a business of selling chicken feces to fertilizer manufacturers, which actually seems reasonable enough. However, the Department of Defense is arguing that chicken feces is used as a component in fuel for missile launchers, so they cannot approve it. It’s still ongoing. Who’d have thought that chicken sh** is useful in so many different ways? Doesn’t seem like a crazy idea now.

Ostrich Eggs

One man had the crazy idea of investing in ostriches and gaining returns by selling the eggs. However, he soon realized that ostriches don’t lay that many eggs and so he’d have to sell each one for around $100,000 per egg (OK we made that number up), and also that he didn’t have enough money to buy a plot of land to keep the ostriches on. Apart from that it was a great idea. By which we mean that it was just a crazy business idea that quite rightly never got off the ground.

Musical Instruments Used By Stars

This crazy idea is simple and genius, but we cannot disclose the investor’s name. One man bought a guitar, got a famous rock star (who happened to be his friend) to play it in a concert and then sign it, and the investor then sold it for around a 500% profit. Clever, if not a little manipulative.

Beauty School

One investor sunk all of his money into a beauty school, and a great idea it was too. It seems that there are many girls (and a few boys) out there who want to learn how to style and make others beautiful. His initial $300,000 investment is now worth $2.9 million.

Christmas Tree Farm

The idea of having a piece of land which is also producing an income is a very attractive idea. Many people have bought a bit of land where growing conditions are just right, planted some trees and then sold them seasonally. Overheads are low, workers are only needed seasonally, and all you have to look out for are fires and pests. Nice. A very sane crazy business idea and model.

Organic Spouts

One man came out of his 401(k) and invested the lot in an organic sprout growing farm, growing all different types of organic sprouts without using any soil, and which is now valued at $550,000. Not such a crazy business idea and it’s considered a growing industry.

Horses and Cows

One man, Rajeev Kotyan, has made lots of money by investing in animals. He took his money out of his IRA and invested in a business which purchased dressage horses from Europe for competitions in the United States, and received returns ranging from 23% to 76%. He also invested in cows, loaning a farmer that he met at the airport the funds that he needed in order to buy some cows, renting them out to the farmer until the said farmer bought them outright 5 years later. Kotyan made a 25% return on his investment, which at the time people thought was a crazy idea. In fact, he was so successful with his alternative investments that he was then hired by Nua Advisors as an advisor.

Wine

You can make a lot of money by investing in wine. You just have to buy at an early time when prices are usually lower, find good places (with climate control) for storage, buy the best vintages and then hold on to them for a while. Holding on without drinking is the hard part and why this is probably considered a somewhat crazy idea by many.

Sports Memorabilia

Many people have made money out of this not so crazy business idea, especially when they concentrate on autographed items, items from the 19th Century (since not many have actually survived), or any items which are linked to legends. And some stuff is worth a fortune; Babe Ruth’s bat sold for $1.25 million, as did Paul Henderson’s 1972 Summit Series jersey (from when Canada’s ice hockey amateurs beat the Russians at their own game), Sheffield FC’s (the first official football club in the UK) rulebook went for $200,000 more, while James Naismith’s founding rules of basketball went for $4.3 million. And, sometimes, the subject matter doesn’t matter all that much – a baseball card of someone called Honus Wagner went for $2.8 million simply because not many of them had been printed.

Comic Books

Old comic books are worth their weight in gold. Actually they’re worth more than that. The reason is because most kids would read them and then throw them away or pass them on to their friends, so any copies are rare, and any copies in mint condition are even rarer than rare. A Superman No 1 edition went for $1.5 million. It’s all about scarcity, condition, and things like having no missing pages or other defects. Books are also a good investment if you find a rare old one in good condition… and which is signed by the author. Not a crazy business idea.

Shoes with Wheels

You’ve seen them, we’ve all seen them. Little booties with little wheels on the bottom and little flashing lights on the sides, kids whizzing around having lots of fun and surprisingly not bumping into everything in sight, even in crowded shopping malls. Yet that idea had to be pitched at some point, and it actually sounds like one of them somewhat crazy inventions, a lot crazy actually, yet it made a lot of money for Heelys, Inc.

Female Condoms

Seems so obvious, why should condoms be just for men? Even though it just seemed like another one of those crazy ideas, the Female Health Company made them and now distribute them in over 100 countries as a means of women preventing pregnancy and sexually-transmitted diseases. Apparently a lot of men don’t care so much.

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