Brian Chesky, Nathan Blecharczyk and Joe Gebbia are all in their early 30’s. And each of them will soon be worth more than $US1 billion, Forbes reports.
The trio co-founded Airbnb, a short-term, peer-to-peer apartment rental service that’s an alternative to hotels. They’re raising a new round of financing at an estimated $US10 billion valuation.
Once that fundraise is complete, each founder will be worth a little more than $US1.5 billion, Forbes’ Alex Konrad and Ryan Mac say. Chesky, 32, Blecharczyk, 30, and Gebbia, 32, will each maintain just over 15% stakes after the fundraise, according to a Forbes source. They will become the first billionaires of the budding sharing economy, otherwise known as the rent-don’t-buy fad. Other startups in the space include Rent the Runway (a store that rents out designer dresses) and GetAround (borrow a neighbour’s car).
Until now, Airbnb’s founders have chosen to live modestly. Chesky often rents out his pad and opts to live in Airbnbs to test the product. He and Gebbia still live in the same apartment where they founded Airbnb in 2008. Blecharczyk rides a bike to work instead of a fancy car.
Blecharcyzk will be the fourth-youngest billionaire, behind Mark Zuckerberg, Dustin Moskovitz and Hong Kong’s Perenna Kei.