Bic’s line of disposable ballpoint pens became so popular that in 2005 the company reported that its sales had passed the 100 billion mark. This means that Bic has sold 57 pens every second since the disposable ballpoint pen was first introduced in Europe in 1950. Bic reckons that if you lined up all the pens it sold from end to end, they would reach from Earth to Moon approximately 40 times.
Bic’s success with disposable products:
When the classic Bic Cristal was introduced to American consumers in 1959, the pen sold for 19 cents. The product’s slogan was: “Write the first time, every time.”
The company’s founder, Baron Marcel Bich, bought a small factory on the outskirts of Paris after World War II and planned to manufacture fountain pens. Instead, Bich invented a pen that dispensed ink with a rolling ball.
In 1973, the company also struck gold with a disposable lighter that supplied 3,000 light bulbs before it ran out, but Bic disposable underwear and a Bic perfume brand flopped.