Investor Profiles

Part
01
of two
Part
01

Tony Hsieh Profile

A profile for Tony Hsieh has been created. In it, we have outlined the organizations with which he has been associated, his roles with them, his investments and philanthropic contributions. We have also provided insights into his interviews or media mentions citing what he cares about and how he feels about a few issues such as death, legacy and self-improvement.

CURRENT EMPLOYMENT

Tony Hsieh is currently an Advisor Partner at VTF Capital. He has been in that position since 2012. He is also CEO of Zappos. Hsieh has worked with Link Exchange as a founder, Zappos Insights as CEO and Venture Frogs as a co-founder. He has served on the board of Zirtual, Zappos, and JetSuite.

Affiliated Organizations

Hsieh has been affiliated with Link Exchange since 1996. Link Exchange was founded by Hsieh and two others in 1996 and went on to becoming one of the largest banner exchange network before it was acquired by Microsoft for $265 million in 1998.
Hsieh has been affiliated with Venture Frogs since 1999. He is a co-founder along with Alfred Lin. Venture Frogs focuses on e-commerce, internet, information and telecommunications. They provide consulting and investments for companies that are in the early development stages of their life cycle. Venture Frogs has made three notable investments since its inception. One such is its $1.1 million investment in Zappos in 2000.
Another organization with which Hsieh is affiliated with is Zappos. At Zappos, Hsieh sat on the board since 2001, then became CEO. Hsieh was introduced to the company by its founded Nick Swinmum and as a result, Hsieh made an investment through his company Venture Frog. However, not very long after, Hsieh was invited to co-CEO Zappos. Zappos was later acquired by Amazon in 2009 for approximately $1.2 billion. The company has raised in excess of $62.8 million in over eight rounds of funding.
In 2011, Hsieh made a $7 million investment in JetSuite. As part of the deal, Hsieh would become a member of the board of directors. JetSuite was founded in 2009 by JetBlue Airways. The company provides private air travel on the west coast of the US. They have raised over $7 million in funding since its inception and makes over $16 million in revenue annually.
Hsieh became a member of the board of Zirtual sometime between 2012 and 2015. The company was acquired by Startups.com in 2015. They are a provider of virtual assistants. Among their services are the provision of business services and creating travel itineraries.
Hsieh has also been affiliated with a Downtown Project now called "DTP Companies". Here his role is more of a philanthropist. Hsieh came up with the idea back in 2009 to redevelop down town Las Vegas with a view to giving the employees of Zappos somewhere to live and work. The project is still ongoing, and in a recent release, Hsieh is creating a new way of life for Las Vegas through the development of bars, restaurants and options for nightlife. His investment in this trust has been over $350 million.

INVESTMENTS

Hsieh has twenty-nine investments on public record. Only a few were freely and publicly available. His most recent investment was done on January 3, 2019, in Vengo Labs for $7 million. Prior to that, some of his biggest investments were in 2016 where he invested $50 million in Asana and $28 million in OrderWithMe in 2014. Hsieh is believed to be worth approximately $840 million.

PROPERTIES

Hsieh resides primarily in Llamapolis, a trailer park based in Las Vegas. He also owns a home in Southern Highlands. He has investment properties in Las Vegas through his project DTP Companies. Only these properties were published in the public domain.

Interviews/mentions

Hsieh has been interviewed by several persons and is mentioned in a number of articles and stories. In one interview, Hsieh talked about his pet llamas. In this video he highlights the personality traits of his pet.

In this next video, Hsieh is promoting his book, Delivering Happiness. He dedicates it to aspiring entrepreneurs and business leaders. In a more recent event, Hsieh said “If there’s something you want to build, but the tech isn’t there yet, just find the closest possible way to make it happen”.

Hsieh has a passion for customer service. In this article he is reported to have said that Zappos just happens to sell shows but is a customer service company. Hsieh is of the view that when it comes to hiring, employees should fit neatly into the culture of the organization for them to be effective. For Hsieh, the biggest test of his leadership skills is being able to have a drink with someone after firing them. Hsieh believes in integrating life and work as all of it is life. He believes in being true to yourself in business and in life. He wants to be viewed as someone who inspires others to pursue their passions and inspire companies to cultivate cultures that are strong.
Hsieh has self-improvement as one of his core values. He believes one should always be improving themself as a leader. He believes we should stay curious, ask the “why” question and contribute to learning. On the matter of death, Hsieh’s downtown project experienced a number of suicides between 2013 and 2014. The project which should have brought happiness to people failed. As a result, three entrepreneurs involved in the project committed suicide and scores of employees were laid off. According to the NY Post, the deaths of these entrepreneurs was a shock and Hsieh seemed to have wanted these deaths to remain "hush hush". During the time of these deaths, Hsieh “removed himself” but chose to stay behind the scenes. Hsieh later resigned from his leadership role but remained on with the company as an advisor.

CONCLUSION

Tony Hsieh, an entrepreneur, has been involved in companies such as Zappos, Link Exchange, Zirtual, Venture Frogs, and DTP Companies. His has been founder, co-founder, CEO, co-CEO, board member and Advisor to different organizations. His has properties and overall wealth in excess of $840 million. One of his core values is self-improvement.
Part
02
of two
Part
02

Chip Wilson Profile

Organizations in which Chip Wilson is involved include Lululemon Athletica, Hold It All Inc, Facio Therapies, Imagine1Day Foundation and 360 Solutions. He invests in real estate particularly in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, and is involved in charities for educational development in Ethiopia.

RESEARCH STRATEGY

Initial research was performed into Chip Wilson's website to find information about his background and what he does. Data was found readily available on the organizations with which he is associated. Further research into his LinkedIn profile provided details about his roles in these organizations.
News articles found on reputable sites such as BCBusiness, Forbes, Straight and BIV were referenced to find information related to his investments and philanthropic contributions. This yielded facts about his charity works and his real estate investments. It also provided information about his estimated worth through Forbes. In order to find further data about his other investments, his profiles on company databases such as Crunchbase, Craft, Hoovers and Owler were searched, but no relevant information was found.
Chip Wilson’s social media accounts were then referenced, including Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for any posts or advertisements related to other possible investments and charities, but no information was found. This could be due to personal security reasons/settings.
For press in which he speaks or is quoted about the issues he cares about, YouTube was initially referenced but the only relevant media was a 2017 video where he talked about building a legacy in the digital age. Media articles such as Forbes, CNN, Telegraph, and Economic Times were then searched but this provided only general information on his views relating to personal business through BCBusiness. His social media profiles were again searched for videos on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter but no further media was found.

ORGANIZATION AFFILIATIONS

Chip Wilson is a shareholder at Lululemon Athletica, with a “13% stake in the company.” He founded the company in 1998 and resigned from the board of directors in 2015. Lululemon Athletica makes outfits for yoga and other athletics.
He is the executive director of Hold It All Inc., and has occupied the position since 2014. Hold It All Inc. is a business that deals with “apparel, real estate and private equity.”
He was appointed as a board member of Facio Therapies in 2007. The organization is dedicated to causal treatment of facioscapulohumeral dystrophy, a disease that causes muscle wasting.
He is the founder of the Imagine1Day Foundation. The foundation is a charity organization that works towards the development of education in Ethiopia.
He is the founder and CEO of 360 Solutions, an organization based on leadership and organizational development that helps organizations to improve their performance.

INVESTMENTS AND PHILANTHROPY

Chip Wilson donated about $20 million into the building of schools and the development of education in Ethiopia. His other investment interests include real estate where he holds about $300 million worth of property.

NET WORTH

Chip Wilson's estimated net worth is $3.9 billion.

PROPERTY OWNERSHIP

He owns a waterfront mansion where he lives is in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, and has a family real estate company, Low Tide Properties, which owns residential properties in Vancouver. Other than residential real estate, Low Tide Properties also holds industrial and office properties in Vancouver, appearing to take an approach of working with community wants and needs in the area.

PRESS ANALYSIS

The 2017 video where Chip Wilson speaks on making a legacy in the digital age can be found here while this link include an interview with Chip Wilson on self-improvement.

Sources
Sources

From Part 01