Brian Chesky

Stefanie Keenan—Getty Images
  • Age
  • Title
    Cofounder, CEO, and head of community
  • Company

It was 10 years ago next month that Chesky, Nathan Blecharczyk, and Joe Gebbia traveled to the DNC in Denver to introduce their off beat home-sharing idea. Experts said it would never work, but the trio persevered, and today Airbnb claims a valuation of $31 billion and more than 300 million “guest arrivals.” Regulatory and other challenges persist, but it recently reached its first full year of profitability, named former AmEx chief Ken Chenault to its board, and saw 100% growth in its number of Chinese travelers. Coming soon: an IPO.

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List Debut2012