CEO Supper Club: Why Airbnb has absolutely dominated the sharing economy

By Sarah Lacy , written on April 4, 2013

From The News Desk

Perhaps it was appropriate for something as feel-good-sounding as the sharing economy, but our CEO Supper Club attendees were awfully fawning about market leader Airbnb.

It'd be easy for some professional jealousy to creep in-- and Lord knows, I tried to stoke those fires. After all, these recent magazine covers touting the sharing economy phenomenon really focus mostly on Airbnb....and merely allude to the rest. But our founders had nothing but admiration and gratitude for Airbnb's sharing economy evangelism.

I asked why Airbnb had broken out so much more than any of the others, and each entrepreneur had a different answer. Many of them I'd never considered before. But ultimately, John Zimmer of Lyft may have had the most complete answer: The team just executed like crazy. "Iterations it took us years to make, they were doing month-to-month," he says.

I really enjoyed this segment. It's not often you get a roomful of CEOs to break down another company's success without petty player-hating.

In case you aren't familiar with the Airbnb story you should stop what you are doing and watch the first hour of our PandoMonthly sit down with co-founder Brian Chesky. This company is the farthest thing from an overnight success you can imagine, and it's one of the best entrepreneurial war stories I've heard.