Guy Raz dives into the stories behind some of the world’s best known companies. How I Built This weaves a narrative journey about innovators, entrepreneurs and idealists—and the movements they built.
In the late 2000s, Payal Kadakia was working a corporate job and running an Indian dance company on the side. When a search for a ballet class yielded a confusing jumble of computer tabs, she had an idea: create the Open Table of the fitness industry – a search engine where users could sign up for classes in one streamlined place. When that idea failed, Payal pivoted multiple times, eventually landing on the subscription service ClassPass. Today, ClassPass connects users to hundreds of thousands of fitness classes around the world. It was valued at $1 billion earlier this year, but when the pandemic hit, it flattened the fitness industry, forcing Classpass to pivot yet again.
This week, the online design platform Canva closed a new round of funding, bringing the company's valuation to $6 billion. Founder Melanie Perkins is also focused on helping her employees work from home, while supporting more than 30 million users worldwide. Also: Spindrift can't sell its sparkling water in many restaurants that are closed because of COVID-19, but founder Bill Creelman has seen a significant uptick in grocery store and e-commerce sales. These conversations are excerpts from our How I Built Resilience series, where Guy talks online with founders and entrepreneurs about how they're navigating turbulent times.