Airbnb co-founder Joe Gebbia is stepping down to explore other projects

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Joe Gebbia, co-founder of Airbnb and chairman of Airbnb.org, during South By Southwest (SXSW) festival in Austin, Texas, U.S., on Sunday, March 13, 2022.
Matthew Busch | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Airbnb co-founder Joe Gebbia announced Thursday he is stepping down from his role at the company to explore other projects.

Gebbia has been with the company since it was founded in 2007 and said he will remain on Airbnb’s board. He is the first of the three original founders to step down.

“After great consideration, I’ve decided to step back from my full-time operating role at Airbnb,” Gebbia said in a letter to employees. “The primary reason for this transition is that this is the only company I’ve ever helped build, and my brain is bursting with more ideas to bring to the world.”

In the letter posted by Airbnb, Gebbia wrote that he will be stepping back to focus on being a dad. He said he is also seeking time for other projects, and cited documentary filmmaking, philanthropic activities and “a complementary product to Airbnb.”

Gebbia reflected on the early years of the company, which he said was inspired by a landlord hiking the rent on the San Francisco apartment he shared with a roommate.

Gebbia said he will also continue serving on the board of Airbnb.org, a nonprofit organization that has worked to provide housing in times of crisis, including for those affected by Covid-19, natural disasters and global conflicts.

Airbnb.org’s most recent project provided free, temporary housing for over 28,000 people fleeing the war in Ukraine.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

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