In 2007 Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia were broke and looking to raise money to make their rent in San Francisco. They decided to rent out air mattresses in their apartment to attendees of a conference because all the hotels were booked. They called their service “Air Bed and Breakfast.” In a few years, this small experiment would create the hotel industry disruptor Airbnb. The privately held company, with third co-founder Nathan Blecharczyk on board, now lists more than three million lodgings in nearly 200 countries. It is worth $31 billion, more than Hilton and Wyndham combined, and closing in on Marriott .
Leigh Gallagher, assistant managing editor at Fortune magazine, chronicles the extraordinary growth of the company in her new book, The Airbnb Story: How Three Ordinary Guys Disrupted an Industry, Made Billions … and Created Plenty of Controversy . She talked about her book on the Knowledge@Wharton Show, which airs on Sirius XM channel 111 .
An edited transcript of the conversation follows. Wharton Executive Education offers exceptional learning development experiences that offer a global perspective and are informed by evidence-based research. We’ll work with you to find the ideal programs to give your employees […]