20VC: Eventbrite Founder, Julia Hartz on the lessons learned scaling Eventbrite to $3 billion in gross tickets sales

  • I didn’t set out to be an entrepreneur. I was really focused on building a career in television development. I was frustrated by how slow things moved in the television industry. I wanted velocity

  • I was offered a job from Current TV. They offered me much less salary than I was making. My boyfriend [now husband and co-founder] said why go work at someone else’s startup when you could start your own? Let’s do it together.  

  • How is it running a company with your husband? It works well. We compliment each other. He is a natural-born entrepreneur, full of optimism. I am a natural-born operator. I get excited at fixing and making things better.

  • Creating a company together is not that different than creating a family. Or making a great marriage. It all comes down to being partners. The hardest part is we no longer work together. We’d prefer to be around each other more than we are now. 

  • When starting Eventbrite we didn’t know what it would become. We believed we could utilize technology to democratize an industry. 

  • Our first customers were tech bloggers. They used Eventbrite for meetups. Speed daters in New York found Eventbrite organically. This helped us realize that our product was category agnostic. Since we built the first version on the PayPal API we also had international business. This made us realize the breadth of what Eventbrite could be. 

  • Our mission is to help anyone in the world access live events. There are greater opportunities beyond ticketing. I spend more time on developing future businesses than on ticketing.

  • Book recommendation: Overwhelmed: How to Work, Love, and Play When No One Has the Time

  • My best tool for productivity is Asana. It is my operating system.

  • Full podcast here.