Survival school: 9 projects, conquer the world, despite the crisis


© Tauba Auerbach

We have been told that a crisis is the time to start the business and explained why. Another question: what to start? Continuing the conversation about crises from the point of view of starting a business T&P has made an infographic showing the current state of the nine companies. They were all created in the context of the global financial crisis of 2008-2009 and successfully still exist. Their advantage is in the ideas or technologies, redeeming one of two things: either its convenience and novelty, or the opportunity to save.

Color shows the value of the company, calculated during the last round of investment. Click on the name to view the description. You can also sort the projects on the daily number of unique visitors and popularity Alexa.

Estimated value of the company for the year 2014 (in U.S. dollars)

The number of unique visitors per day (million)

Place in the ranking of Alexa





The service for publishing, finding and renting private housing

Year established: 2008
Founders: Nathan Blecharczyk, Brian Chesky, Joe Gebbia
Country: USA
Total investment: ≈ $ 800 million
Staff: 600 people

Airbnb — star startups, without which now it is difficult to imagine the industry of rental housing. The service name stands for airbad & breakfast ("airbed and Breakfast"), and among many investors is the name of Ashton Kutcher.





Service for cloud storage, synchronization and sharing of files and software

Year established: 2007
Founders: Drew Houston, Arash Ferdowsi
Country: USA
Total investment: ≈ $ 500 million
Staff: about 500 people

Doing software development for online poker, drew Houston once forgot the thumb drive, so had to return from new York to Brooklyn. "I wish this never happens to me again," thought Houston and sat down to write code of file storage on the network with access from every possible device. In 2009, the rapper Will.I.Am told that they used Dropbox with David Guetta when he wrote the hit "I Got a Feeling".





A social network for storing and sharing images

Year established: 2009
Founders: Ben Silbermann, Paul Sierra, Evan Sharp
Country: USA
Total investment: ≈ $ 800 million
Staff: about 300 people

Starting Pinterest, Ben Silbermann personally wrote and sent out invitations to five thousand people, and someone met in person. After 9 months on the website there were 10 of thousands of users, and by 2012 the project became the champion in the history of the Internet, faster than anyone after overcoming the milestone of 10 million users.





A service that provides coupons with a decent discounts on the most different services: from a trip to the Spa to learning Hebrew

Year established: 2008
The Founders, Andrew Mason, Eric Lefkofsky, Brad Keywell
Country: USA
Total investment: ≈ $ 1.3 billion
State: more than 10,000 people

Currently, Groupon operates in 48 countries, and has recently become part of the fashion industry, buying online clothing store





Software developer for high-load sites

Year established: 2008
Founders: Christoph Bisila, AMR Awadalla, Jeffrey Hammerbacher, Michael Olson
Country: USA
Total investment: ≈ $ 1.2 billion
State: 579 people

The company makes only technical support. Itself is in the public domain.





Social network and platform for listening and sharing music

Year established: 2008
Founders: Alex Leung, Eric Wahlfors
Country: Germany
Total investment: ≈ $ 123 million
State: 190

Soundcloud was invented by sound designer Alex Luingam for convenient sharing music, as it happens with photos on Flickr and videos on Vimeo. In January this year, the service has been blocked by the government of Turkey, once one of the users has published a recording of telephone conversations of the Prime Minister of the country.


no data



The website and app for finding and recommending a variety of locations: from restaurants to private bedrooms

Year established: 2009
Founders: Dennis Crowley, Naveen Selvadurai
Country: USA
Total investment: ≈ $ 162 million
State: more than 170 people

Recently the service changed the strategy and now instead of collecting check-ins deals with the recommendations: depending on the query, it shows users only the places that they like based on their preferences.





Nationwide classified ads

Year established: 2007
Founders: Jonas Nordlander, Filip Engelbert
Country: Russia
Total investment: ≈ $ 140 million
State: about 80 people

The main message of Avito sounds like "how much is your mess?". In 2007, when few believed in the Russian Internet business, Swedish investors still invested in the project and not lost.

No data on the value of the company




Platform for designers and design projects

Year established: 2008
Founders: Alec Link, Adam Arbolino
Country: Australia
Total investment: ≈ $ 6 million
Staff: about 50 people

The idea to create a similar site appeared after the story with the logo of the London Olympics, which cost 400 thousand pounds and no one liked it. The aim of the project is to make such projects available to all, not just close designers. Currently, the website is a portfolio of more than 400 thousand people from around the world that work directly with Yahoo! HTC, Microsoft and so on.



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