It is said that up to 50% of businesses fail within five years of inception. Most of these business start and end in obscurity. A few of them, however, start up with the verve of a cannonball, only to crash with equal fanfare. Some of the companies listed below, like Enron and DeLorean, exemplify this cataclysmic appeal. Others, like Pan Am and Woolworth’s, just tug at our heartstrings.