Many current and former employees who spoke with Business Insider did so on condition of anonymity for fear of retribution from Kelly. A contractor who worked with Kelly for about one year said, "I found the job so emotionally and professionally abusive that I needed to seek therapy.". Several former employees described a pattern: If you didn’t challenge Kelly, they said, you’d stay on his good side. Andaz Costa Rica Resort At Peninsula Papagayo. The former senior colleague said she thought Kelly had little faith in his team members. The Points Guy, a travel and credit-card-rewards website also known as TPG, was founded 10 years ago. At a 2018 party Kelly hosted for TPG employees on the rooftop of his apartment in Manhattan's Flatiron District, the former editorial employee said he gave away flight credits for the person who typed in Slack the fastest: "Brian is the world's best boss.". Amy Nobile, a friend of Kelly’s who has traveled with him to places including Guatemala and Iceland, told Business Insider that Kelly is a “generous soul” with his friends and family and would often have lavish surprises planned for their trips, including a helicopter ride to Reykjavik, Iceland, after they exited an ice cave. The CEO’s splurges — like a $50,000 personal-security bill for a work trip to Israel — became a concern for TPG’s parent company, Red Ventures, according to a former editorial employee. Even Kelly, who had no prior media experience before starting TPG, said in a 2019 interview with Lifehacker that he “never really wanted to run a large company.”. At a 2018 party Kelly hosted for TPG employees on the rooftop of his apartment in Manhattan’s Flatiron District, the former editorial employee said he gave away flight credits for the person who typed in Slack the fastest: “Brian is the world’s best boss.”. How could you still be failing like this?”. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images for The Points Guy) TPG is now owned by Red Ventures, which bought Bankrate for $1.24 billion in 2017. TPG also used to reimburse everyone's personal-credit-card fees but has now capped the reimbursements at various rates depending on the card, he added. The freelance producer told both his best friend and another TPG contractor about the incident. as well as other partner offers and accept our, Dave Kotinsky/Stringer/Getty Images; Samantha Lee/Business Insider. Many current and former employees who spoke with Business Insider did so on condition of anonymity for fear of retribution from Kelly. ", Kelly's spokesperson, Melanie Bonvicino, said in a statement: "My client Brian Kelly was unable respond to Business Insider's query due to the confidential terms of his employment contract with TPG's parent company.". Another Kelly associate said, "There would be points where I would be concerned about some of the drug use … it was very jarring.". How could you still be failing like this?". When Business Insider provided further details via email, the second friend did not respond. Two former freelancers each said Kelly asked them to buy cocaine for him while on a work trip in Asia. While many insiders in the points and miles industry admire Kelly for bringing their niche to the mainstream, some believe Kelly’s coziness with credit-card issuers prevents him from offering unbiased credit-card advice. "Not only was it unprofessional, inappropriate, and a reaction disproportionate to the situation, it was honestly very scary coming from someone who was in a top position of power. Every time someone signs up for a credit card or rewards program via the site, the company collects anywhere from $25 to $700, the former editorial employee told Business Insider. “You might get the dad that is in a great mood and is giving out gifts and praise like it’s candy, or you might get the bad dad who is on a raging bender,” she said. Kelly lives a lavish lifestyle of first-class flights and luxury hotel suites in destinations including the Maldives, Venice, and Japan. Bankrate, the financial-services and marketing company that purchased TPG in 2012, appeared to approve of, or at least not question, the company's spending habits. Dont Let Exxon Mobils 10% Dividend Tempt You; Its a Value Trap! Sign up for Insider Life. The Points Guy founder Brian Kelly has extravagant life and spending – Business Insider, Ski towns like Tahoe grapple with a boom in school enrollment – Business Insider, Joe Bidens plan would create 7 million more jobs than Trump: Moodys – Business Insider. Brian Kelly is the founder and CEO of The Points Guy, a travel and credit-card-rewards website also known as TPG. Tahiti? “I think the big thing that [TPG] got right, which is something that publishing is waking up to from a business-model standpoint, is that just putting ads in front of people isn’t good enough. This past holiday season was a busy one for Brian Kelly. According to each, the freelancer accepted the written offer, after which she disclosed she was pregnant. Then came a stay at a $3,000-a-night five-star resort in the Maldives, replete with sunrise yoga and Champagne, before moving on to a luxury resort in Jaipur, India, for Christmas. Despite working at a company hailing high-flying travel and five-star hotels, office life could be tense at TPG, according to sources. NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 04: The Points Guy, Brian Kelly speaks onstage during The Points Guy Awards on December 4, 2018 in New York City. A former senior colleague and the former editorial employee told Business Insider that one of their coworkers was fired after acknowledging using a marijuana vape pen in June at the New York City Pride March, where TPG had a Boeing 747-themed parade float. When Business Insider provided further details via email, the second friend did not respond.
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