GeekWire Podcast: Expedia’s lifeline; Bill Gates on life after lockdown; Pivoting in a pandemic

Here’s what we’re talking about this week on the GeekWire Podcast.

“Picture restaurants that only seat people at every other table, and airplanes where every middle seat is empty.” That is what the “semi-normal” next phase of the pandemic will look like, Bill Gates says, offering a starkly pragmatic take that contrasts with predictions from President Trump that the economy will come “roaring back.” But Gates also points to the potential for a new wave of innovation the likes of which hasn’t been seen since World War II.

“If there’s life, there’s travel,” says Expedia chairman Barry Diller, expressing optimism about the future even as the Seattle-based online travel giant makes a series of dramatic moves to shake up its business amid the economic crisis.

Speaking of shaking things up, GeekWire co-founder John Cook returns to the show and offers his own Richter Scale to help understand how the pandemic is stirring some companies to greatness, and shaking others to their core.

Pivoting During a Pandemic: In our final segment, we share selected highlights from our members-only webinar on “Pivoting in a Pandemic,” with two experienced Seattle CEOs who are in the thick of it right now: Redfin CEO Glenn Kelman, who is leading the tech-powered real estate brokerage through a period of unprecedented economic turmoil; and Tokki CEO Jane Park, the former Julep CEO, who quickly pivoted her eco-friendly gift wrap startup Tokki to adjust to the realities of the pandemic shortly after launching earlier this year.

We’ll be hosting these types of discussions regularly with newsmakers and leaders in business, science, technology and startups, and our members get to tune in and participate live. Go to to learn more.

Thanks for listening! Subscribe to GeekWire in your favorite podcast app. Our podcast producer is Curt Milton, and our theme music is by Daniel L.K. Caldwell.

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