How An Airbnb Founder Sold Me His Travel Start-Up In 2008 [Video]

How An Airbnb Founder Sold Me His Travel Start-Up In 2008 [Video]

A visit to SF's start-up scene uncovered Joe Gebbia who was just beginning his game-changing journey.

Piers Fawkes, PSFK
  • 19 may 2013

On a trip to San Francisco a few years ago, I invited a number of entrepreneurs to come and visit the rental I was staying in to talk about their new projects. I wanted to listen to the voices in the growing start-up scene to try to understand the themes that were developing and the start-ups to watch. I learned a lot from the discussions and met some people who went on to build some really interesting businesses (including Fluther which was acquired by Twitter).

One of the entrepreneurs I spoke to was Joe Gebbia who had started the site AirBnb which, five years later, is now considered a $1billion business. In this video, he speaks about his new project, how it works and his ideas on growing his audience:

When you watch the video below from 2008, you’ll see Joe talk with passion about the site (which was called the longer AirBed& at the time). My 3 key take-aways from looking back at the interview are:

1. How the idea driving the service hasn’t changed significantly

2. Considering that it was a fledgling service, it’s amazing to see how ‘on-point’ Joe was

3. The ability to see big opportunities to make significant leaps in the growth of his business. In the video, he talks about the political conventions that were happening that year and how the lack of rooms for delegates presented a huge business and awareness opportunity for his company.

From that first meeting, I developed a great relationship with Joe and I invited him to come and speak at our conferences. If you’d like to hear what happened next I suggest you watch this video from PSFK CONFERENCE NYC 2011

Joe Gebbia: The Airbnb Story from Piers Fawkes on Vimeo.

…. and if you want to hear about how he and his team built a brand, the watch this talk from PSFK CONFERENCE SF 2012

Joe Gebbia: The Power of Story from Piers Fawkes on Vimeo.



Transformable Table Maximizes Utility In Small Spaces

Design & Architecture
Syndicated Yesterday

How Fashion Became All About Fonts

Why a new wave of designs have put typography front and center on your clothing

Retail Yesterday

GM And Audi Are Experimenting With Car Rentals In SF

The automakers are trying something new to capture the segment of urban dwellers who don't want to own a car


Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Travel Yesterday

This Vertical Forest Hotel Will Improve The Air Around It

An architectural firm is creating a lush mountain lodging in China with so much greenery that it will actually clean the atmosphere

Europe Yesterday

This Company Believes Insects Can Provide Biofuel To Power Our Future

A Polish group is testing out a new factory concept that can provide a source of renewable energy, and even serve space missions

Related Expert

Penny Baldwin

Marketing, Branding, Business, Technology

Technology Yesterday

Music Venue Caters To Virtual Reality Events

Boiler Room has launched the first VR hub for content creators to capture special footage for the masses

Gaming & Play Yesterday

Automated Chessboard Lets You Play Against Anyone In The World

Square Off is an AI-powered board that can move the pieces on its own

Technology Yesterday

Contraband Recorder Helps Those In Need Capture Captive Conversations

Designer Marianna Mezhibovkaya created the device to help prison inmates capture crucial evidence of abuse


Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry

PSFK Op-Ed Yesterday

Health Expert: Nutritional Meal Replacements Are A Solution To Corporate Wellness

Ample Foods Founder Connor Young explains why supplements are the next food trend coming to the workplace

PSFK Labs october 25, 2016

The Keys For Exceptional Performance On And Off The Field

PSFK Labs' new report highlights five important insights for businesses to perform better than the competition

Advertising Yesterday

A Compelling Brand Purpose Is Never Born In The Boardroom

Strategist and Designer Anna-Rae Morris shares why she believes all brands exist for a reason, and how Snapchat has upended our behavior

Retail Yesterday

Creative Leadership Expert: Experiencing A Seismic Shift From Brand Loyalty To Interface Loyalty

Marc Shillum, founder of Chief Creative Office, explains why product designers must rethink the way they capture consumer attention

Fitness & Sport Yesterday

Editorial Roundtable: The Xs And Os Of Performance-Enhanced Sports

WHOOP, ShotTracker, Rithmio, PlaySight, STYR Labs, EverybodyFights and Lift / Next Level Floats explain that we're only at the iceberg's tip of performance enhancement

Design & Architecture Yesterday

Kodak’s Smartphone Is Inspired By A Retro Camera

Ektra is an Android phone with a powerful lens aimed at photographers

Sustainability Yesterday

Modern Home Created Entirely Out Of Modular Shipping Crates

A project in Ecuador used the ubiquitous material to design a spacious and industrial-chic house

Retail Yesterday

Retail Concept Offers Food Hall Inspired Space For Online Brands

The store will offer a lower cost way for internet entrepreneurs to try physical retailing

Advertising Yesterday

Disney Retells Beauty And The Beast On Snapchat

In a partnership with LACMA, the entertainment platform drew from over 130,000 works in the museum's collection

No search results found.