Meet Tony Hsieh
Business speaker Tony Hsieh is an entrepreneur, author and one of the most well respected businessmen in the world of the internet. A graduate of Harvard University in the mid-nineties, Tony Hsieh started his first post-graduation project called LinkExchange, an online advertising network which allowed members to display banner ads on other websites. The first idea of its kind in an internet that was still very young, LinkExchange had attracted over 400,000 members and 5 million banner ads rotated daily after only two and a half years. In 1999, at the age of 24, sold LinkExchange, the company he co-founded, to Microsoft for $265 million.
He then joined Zappos as an advisor and investor, and eventually became CEO, where he helped Zappos grow from almost no sales to over $1 billion in gross merchandise sales annually, while simultaneously making Fortune Magazine’s annual “Best Companies to Work For” list. In November 2009, Zappos was acquired by Amazon.com in a deal valued at $1.2 billion on the day of closing. Throughout his career, Tony has won countless awards including the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year.
Tony’s first book, Delivering Happiness, was published in June 2010, and outlines his path from starting a worm farm to life at Zappos. Tony shows how a very different kind of corporate culture is a powerful model for achieving success and happiness. “Delivering Happiness”, debuted at #1 on The New York Times bestseller list.
Tony was interviewed by Barbara Walters when she interviewed self-made entrepreneurs. The piece included a visit to the headquarters of Zappos.com that was dubbed what “might just be the wackiest workplace in America.”
In addition to his responsibilities as CEO of Zappos.com, Tony is leading the “Downtown Project,” a group committed to transforming downtown Las Vegas into the most community-focused large city in the world. This transformation includes the relocation of the Zappos.com offices from Henderson, Nevada to what was the old City Hall in downtown Las Vegas.
Suggested Speaking Topics
Zappos / Delivering Happiness
Culture is to a company as community is to a city: it's about values, innovation, serendipity, participation, upward mobility, and attraction of smart startups and the creative class. Tony is applying his very successful Zappos corporate culture model (recognized multiple times by FORTUNE as one of the top 100 best places to work) to help build the most community-focused large city in the world in the place you would least expect it: Downtown Las Vegas. Research has shown that every time the size of a city doubles, productivity and innovation per resident increases by 15%, but when companies get bigger, productivity per employee generally goes down. With his new $350 million Downtown Project, Tony is creating a unique hybrid of corporation, community, and city to drive productivity and innovation both for Zappos as well as the city itself.
Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion and Purpose
Tony Hsieh will discuss the different ingredients used by Zappos.com to build a long-lasting enduring brand, including the importance of customer service and company culture. Tony will talk about how focusing on delivering happiness to customers and employees has enabled the company to expand beyond selling shoes to clothing, bags, and other product categories.