INC has an article penned by Zappos CEO and newly-minted-book-author, Tony Hsieh detailing the decision to sell Zappos to Amazon.com after initially turning them down. According to Hsieh, he made the decision in order to preserve an experiment in happiness, not a shoe company.
In April, I flew to Seattle for an hourlong meeting with Jeff Bezos. I gave him my standard presentation on Zappos, which is mostly about our culture. Toward the end of the presentation, I started talking about the science of happiness — and how we try to use it to serve our customers and employees better.
Out of nowhere, Jeff said, “Did you know that people are very bad at predicting what will make them happy?” Those were the exact words on my next slide. I put it up and said, “Yes, but apparently you are very good at predicting PowerPoint slides.” After that moment, things got comfortable. It seemed clear that Amazon had come to appreciate our company culture as well as our strong sales.
Why I Sold Zappos [INC]