Sunday, April 24, 2011

Entrepreneur #7 - Malcolm Forbes; nothing and everything to do with motorcycles

Forbes was the son of America’s first business magazine publisher. After heroic service in WWII, he came home to work at Forbes Magazine, although he nearly became the Governor of New Jersey – he won the Republican nomination but lost the election. So what does running Forbes Magazine have to do with motorcycles? Nothing.
Forbes was a tireless promoter of motorcycling, with a knack for angles that would appeal to mainstream media. Here, he poses with Liz Taylor. Ironically, while Forbes was successful at breaking down some of the social stigma of being a biker, he never came out of the closet - although he was frequently seen in the gay bars and bathhouses of New York. I often wonder if he bought his first motorcycle to go with the leather outfits he already wore...
Forbes discovered motorcycling in the 1960s. He bought a motorcycle dealership in New Jersey, which became one of the biggest shops in the country. Using his high-level business connections, he worked tirelessly to establish motorcycle riding as a respectable pastime. He was an extremely effective political lobbyist always ready to defend motorcycling from legal assault. With his media-savvy background, he managed to plant scores of motorcycle stories in the mainstream media. The social acceptability of motorcycles today owes much to Malcolm Forbes.

No comments:

Post a Comment