One of the more hilarious origin stories in the tech startup world is how the cofounders of Airbnb helped raise money for their nascent home-sharing venture by selling cereal boxes inspired by the 2008 presidential election. If you look carefully, you can still find links for “Obama O’s” and “Cap’n McCains” on the Airbnb website.
Twelve years later, things have certainly changed: Obama’s vice president is about to take over the White House while Airbnb, that once-humble startup, is about to take on the Nasdaq. The short-term rental giant filed to go public yesterday in what is expected to be one of the most-anticipated IPOs of the year.
To mark the occasion, investing platform Public.com decided to riff on Airbnb’s breakfast bona fides with its own limited-edition cereal. Can you even guess what it’s called? That’s right—IPOats.
The cereal comes complete with a pink box and a smiling caricature of Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky (you’d be smiling too if you were about to rake in that many billions), and Public says it’s limited to 500 boxes. To get one, you have to visit Public’s website and tweet out the link, which essentially enters you in a contest.
As for what the cereal actually tastes like, or whether it’s better for you than renting out your spare bedroom to strangers, that’s TBD. I asked a Public rep for more information about the cereal’s ingredients and will update this post if I hear back.
So enter—and eat—at your own risk.
Airbnb is going public so we dropped a cereal.
— Public.com (@public) November 16, 2020