Tue. Oct 26th, 2021


If you have visited Las Vegas anytime within the last 15 years, you may have encountered Tony Hsieh. His influence was everywhere in the city — nowhere more evident than in his beloved downtown.

The former CEO of Zappos, he was as quiet and unassuming as he was brilliant. A regular at many local establishments — many that he invested in personally — if you walked past him you might not have known he was the billionaire, philanthropist, and inspirational figure that singlehandedly changed the face of customer service forever.

If, however, you lingered for a bit, you would have gotten a sense of the indescribable presence he carried. Behind his eccentricities — the ever-present Fernet-Branca, the pet alpacas, his famously low annual salary at Zappos, his home inside his own tiny communal trailer park — this feeling of something “greater” is what knitted his tribe together.

My first encounter

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Tony Hsieh:

After graduating from college in ’95, I went to work for Oracle in the Bay Area.

My college roommate, we decided to start our own business. And at the time, the Internet was just getting started. We started a Web design and marketing business. During lunch hours, I would go and make sales calls.

In the evenings at home, we would create Web sites. And then we realized that all these Web sites we were creating, they didn’t really have a way market themselves. And so that’s what led us to start a service called LinkExchange. We started hiring friends.

And that whole strategy of hiring friends and friends of friends worked really well until we got to about 20 people. And then we basically ran out of friends. We had to start hiring people through resumes and interviewing. And we also didn’t know any better to pay

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The former CEO of Zappos.com retired last summer, after selling his company to Amazon for nearly $ 2 billion.

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29, 2020

3 min read

This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process.

The businessman Tony Hsieh, former CEO of the clothing and shoe store Zappos.com, died of a domestic fire last Friday, as confirmed on the official website of the company he created.

The accident, where the 46-year-old billionaire lost his life, occurred on November 27 in Connecticut, USA. No further details have been given about the cause of his death or the circumstances of the fire. For now it is only known that Hsieh was visiting his family.

The late businessman sold Zappos.com in 2009 to Amazon for $ 1.9 billion. However, he remained

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Tony Hsieh posing for the camera

© AP



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LAS VEGAS (AP) — Tony Hsieh, the retired CEO of Las Vegas-based online shoe retailer Zappos.com, who spent years working to transform the city’s downtown area, has died. He was two weeks away from his 47th birthday.

Hsieh was with family when he died Friday, according to DTP Companies, which he founded. He died of injuries suffered in a Nov. 18 fire in New London, Conn., Megan Fazio, a spokesperson for Downtown Partnership in Las Vegas, told Hearst Connecticut Media on Saturday.

The Day newspaper reported the day of the fire that one person had been removed from a waterfront home in New London with possible burns and smoke inhalation. The person, whose name authorities did not release, was eventually taken to Bridgeport Hospital, which has a burn center.

Fire Chief Thomas Curcio was quoted by the Day as saying that crews arrived around

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There are many good reasons to remember Tony Hsieh, but I keep thinking about one in particular: an unusual employment policy at Zappos, where Hsieh was CEO for two decades.

It’s even more poignant after Hsieh died Friday, at the far-too-young-age of 46.

Zappos twice built companies from the ground up and found big exits: Zappos to Amazon for $1.2 billion, and before that, LinkExchange, which Microsoft acquired for $265 million before Hsieh turned 25.

He was also a booster of the city of Las Vegas, where Zappos is headquartered, and a thought leader in entrepreneurship and business, starting with the publication of his book, Delivering Happiness.. 

But, I’d like to remember him for something else. 

Not just the quirkiness for which he was known — a near-billionaire who lived in an Airstream trailer because, as he once explained, he valued experiences over things — but instead, for the

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