Cash Cow

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Meaning of Idiom 'Cash Cow'

A cash cow is something, such as a product or business, that is a reliable source or profit; a dependable money-maker that contributes the most overall profits to a business.


"Today, the company has over one-hundred products but it is their first product which continues to be the cash-cow."

"I was hesitant to invest in my brother-in-law's business venture but it turned out to be a cash cow."

"Not every invention, no matter how good, can be a cash cow."


Cash cow has only been in use since the 1970's but the term "milch cow" was used with the same meaning since the 1600's.

A milch cow is a cow kept for her milk (dairy cow). The term was used figuratively to refer to any source of easy and reliable revenue or resources. (Source)

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