Arnold Schwarzenegger is the man to thank for the five minutes of fame that these vehicles enjoyed. The SUVs and trucks were popular during the 1990s and 2000s, manufactured after the Hollywood actor pestered automaker AM General to bring out a range of army HumVee vehicles for civilians. The actor had spotted the military vehicle while filiming a movie in Oregon, and saw its potential as a road car. In 1992, Schwarzenegger got his way and the first civilian Hummer, H1, was released.
At its peak, the C64 was selling 2.5 million units per year. But sales declined towards the end of the 1980s and, in 1994, the release of one poorly performing games console later, the company filed for bankruptcy. Despite attempting a relaunch under the name Commodore USA between 2010-2013, the brand ultimately went defunct.
Yet another airline to fall from grace, TWA was founded back in 1930 following a merger between Transcontinental Air Transport and Western Air Express. Taken over by tycoon Howard Hughes in 1939, the company experienced surging growth throughout the 1940s and 1950s due to increasing demand for air travel. Hughes, however, was an eccentric owner whose erratic decisions contributed to TWA's failure to properly compete in the market when rivals were buying up big jets. Hughes left the company in 1960, but in 1978 the Airline Deregulation Act threw open the domestic market to a slew of competitors and spelled the end for the carrier...
Ebbers (pictured) and other company members had under-reported line costs, as well as inflating the company’s assets by $1 billion (£788m) through fake accounting entries. After an investigation by its internal auditing department, WorldCom uncovered a staggering $3.8 billion (£3bn) in fraud between 1999 and the first quarter of 2002. In July 2002, WorldCom filed for bankruptcy, then in July 2005 Ebbers was sentenced to 25 years in prison for the fraud. To ensure operations would continue in the future, WorldCom merged with MCI Inc Communications, which it is still known as today.
With a then-expensive selling price of $25,000, owning a DeLorean was out of reach for most people, and the company produced less than 9,000 of the iconic gull-wing cars (the Back to the Future car) before shutting down in 1982. On the same day that the company's closure was announced, DeLorean was accused of trafficking charges, although he was later acquitted.
In 2008, the comany filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy following a major loss of clients, dramatic stock losses and devaluation of assets by credit rating agencies. This was all due to Lehman’s involvement in the subprime mortgage crisis, supposed negligence and excessive risk taking. Lehman Brothers had survived several financial crises but the US housing market collapse proved too much for the company. As a result, the company’s North American investment banking and trading businesses, and NYC headquarters, were sold to British bank Barclays.
As we know from the later success of streaming services like Netflix, that was a huge error. Hit hard by the collapse of the Lehman Brothers bank in 2008, Blockbuster was left $350 million in debt and filed for bankruptcy in the US in 2010. The movie rental chain isn't completely dead yet, though – one store remains open in Bend, Oregon, which has managed to stay alive thanks to a combination of loyal customers and nostalgic visitors.
Under Kmart's control, the retail giant continued to expand Borders' empire throughout the 1990s, combining it with another of its book brands, Waldenbooks. Sadly, the popularity of bookstores dropped as the popularity of Amazon, e-readers and online shopping grew, and Borders felt the pinch. In 2011, the original store in Ann Arbor closed and the company declared bankruptcy.
At first, e-commerce helped the business, as Toys R Us teamed up with Amazon in 2000 as its exclusive toy retailer for a 10-year period. Yet when Amazon allowed other toy companies to sell through its site before the end of the contract, Toys R Us ended the partnership. The toy giant successfully sued Amazon, but didn't fully recover. Paired with greedy investors and mismanaged finances, the chain was forced to go bankrupt in September 2017.
British cabinet-maker Thomas Cook launched his eponymous holiday tour operator in 1841, when he took around 500 temperance campaigners from Leicester to Loughborough to a teetotal rally by train. The company gradually grew into an international package holiday provider, with European tours starting from 1855 and trips to America launching in 1866. Thomas Cook offered the first ever escorted world tour in 1872, and by 1888 it had offices around the world. Pictured is one of Thomas Cook & Son's dahabeahs (a passenger boat) on a tour in Egypt.
The family sold the company in 1926, and it passed through several hands. Under the name Thomas Cook Group it even branched into its own airlines in 2003. However, in 2018 the company was advised to split the business to boost its failing finances, and in early 2019 it closed 21 of its travel agent stores, with the company blaming an increase in online bookings. Things got worse, and it reported over £1.5 billion in losses in the first half of 2019. Then, after talks to sell the majority of the business to existing shareholder Chinese company Fosun Tourism fell through, Thomas Cook Group collapsed in September this year. This left 150,000 British travellers stranded in various countries across the world, with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) having to step in to pay to bring them home.