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Zappos Head Talks Culture, Downtown Vegas

Tony Hsieh spoke to emerging consumer brands, bankers and investors at an event in New York.

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FN CEO Summit 2013 Tony Hsieh

Tony Hsieh

Photo By Moritz & Co.

A great brand is a story that never stops unfolding.

That was the message Zappos.com CEO Tony Hsieh delivered to emerging companies, investors and bankers at the fourth annual Next Great Consumer Brands Showcase, hosted by Nasdaq and Consensus Advisors in New York on Wednesday.

Speaking to startup firms across the consumer goods sector, Hsieh likened his plans to transform downtown Las Vegas to the growth potential of the brands presenting at the conference, which ranged from apparel label Nanette Lepore to swimwear company Bikini Thief.

Hsieh said, “We’re approaching [the Las Vegas transformation] as a startup — how many opportunities do you have in a lifetime to help shape a city?”

He later detailed his vision for downtown Las Vegas, which involves remaking the area into the most community-focused large city in the world with the help of a $350 million investment in residential and commercial real estate, tech startups and community and cultural projects.

“Every time the size of a city doubles, productivity and innovation per resident increases by 15 percent,” Hsieh said during the presentation, which focused on partnering with small businesses to build a greater sense of community and urban culture.

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