Linn On March 13, 2020, Glen Kelman, CEO of online real estate broker Redfin, received a call from Henry Elenbogen, a long-time investor of Redfin, who started his own business while cycling.
At Harvard, Mr. Elenbogen is well-known in the history of technology. One major thing he learned, he said, was that technology was well-developed and well-developed.
“Tell me something,” Mr. Elenbogen asked Mr. Kelman on his account on Redfin’s website. “When people start visiting homes via the iPhone, do not many of them decide that this is the best way to see homes even after this epidemic is over? And if this whole process of buying and selling houses is mostly imaginary, how will other brokers compete with you? ”
Mr. Kelman said he did not know how busy Seattle’s busy streets were.
“I will,” said Mr. Elenbogen. The world is changing in your favor. ”
There was no general view then, and certainly not Mr. Kelman. The first confirmed case of cholera virus in the United States was on February 29 in a Seattle nursing home. Within hours, the sellers decided that they probably did not want guests to breathe in their rooms and bedrooms. The rulers also began to go out.
For Redfin, that crisis was the beginning. In a matter of days, it closed 78 offices across the country. It lost two-thirds of its value.
“The decline was increasing every day,” said Mr. Kelman. He agreed to sell Redinfin for $ 110 million, thinking he might need money to get him through a long drought. In early April, Mr. Kelman blew his whistle on 41 percent of the company’s employees. More than 1,000 people were injured.