Some leaders are born, while others manage by choice. Such is the case of Eventbrite’s Julia Hartz, who, since stepping into the CEO role of Eventbrite, has guided the company toward tremendous growth through an entrepreneurial vision that includes a focus on diversity, determination, and creativity in the midst of a pandemic.
Since its inception in 2006, Eventbrite (NYSE: EB) has become a disruptor in the events industry, changing not only how live events can be hosted and sold, but also modeling the business through diverse leadership.
“When I think about why I’ve been able to succeed in this journey, I think in strong part it’s because I’m surrounded by so many feminists and men who really see the power of raising women up and [how]clearly transformative it’s been [as]an asset to our company,” Hartz said an interview with Forbes.
The Importance of Focusing on People
In an interview with the National Center for Women and Information Technology, Hartz said, “I’m an entrepreneur because I believe that I can change an industry.”
Hartz studied broadcast journalism and communication at Pepperdine University before going to work at MTV and later FX. When Hartz left her job at FX, she co-founded Eventbrite with her then-fiance Kevin Hartz and Renaud Visage in 2006.
Because their start-up lacked capital, the trio focused on building a solid, horizontal foundation that focused on hiring the right people and driving innovation in the event industry.
“We hire very, very smart, capable, talented people and we need to let them have their freedom to really change this industry,” Hartz told the National Center for Women and Information Technology.
An Entrepreneur by Choice
For 10 years, Hartz served as president of Eventbrite. Then, in 2016, she took over as CEO from co-founder and husband Kevin.
Despite initial misgivings, Hartz brought her operational experience and focus on people into the CEO role, as well as her belief and passion in creating diversity in the tech industry.
Through her steadfast guidance and dedication to diversity in tech, Eventbrite boasts a board of directors that has a 50/50 gender split, and a senior management team that is almost as equally diverse.
“I know [how]important that was to me and still is today to surround myself with strong women,” Hartz said in the interview with Forbes.
In 2018 Hartz took Eventbrite public, raising more than $230 million and selling 10 million shares, per MarketWatch.
COVID Strikes Events Biz Hard
When Covid-19 shuttered businesses in 2020, Eventbrite was hit particularly hard. However, through strategic shifting, the company was able to pivot under Hartz’s leadership, hosting over 4.6 million events in 2020 and selling over 230 million tickets per the Eventbrite website.
The firm is also now scheduling Covid-19 vaccinations and events through its site.
“My hope is that someday people write about Eventbrite because of the kind of company we are, not just about what we did or how much money we made,” Hartz said in her interview with Forbes.
Through her drive in promoting diversity, focus on creating the right teams for the job, and the exponential growth that has flourished under her leadership, Julia Hartz embodies the Entrepreneurial Factor©, the core of the ERShares investment approach.
ERShares offers an entrepreneura SMA strategy that capitalizes on female leadership in the entrepreneurial space.
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