At the age of 24, Tony Hsieh (pronounced Shay) sold LinkExchange, the company he co-founded, to Microsoft for $265 million. He then joined Zappos as an adviser 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. Zappos was acquired by Amazon in a deal valued at $1.2 billion on the day of closing.
Tony's first book, "Delivering Happiness", debuted at #1 on the New York Times Bestseller list and has remained on the list every week. He currently lives in Las Vegas and sort of has a cat.
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.
Zappos / Delivering Happiness / Downtown Las Vegas
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.