Abstract: As an emergent phenomenon offering pathways towards sustainability, the Sharing Economy is a generic category representing multiple entrepreneurial ventures or Sharing Based Programs (SBPs). To become viable, SBPs must position themselves regarding, and obtain legitimacy from, other stakeholders. The nature of this self-presentation strategy and legitimacy granting process is mostly unknown. This paper aims to fill this gap by analyzing how 40 SBP present themselves and the nature of legitimacy granted by 95 stakeholders to four prototypical SBPs. Results reveal that SBPs claim to be a part of a global movement, acting as agents of change in contemporary matters: the widespread prevalence of information technologies; the desirability of empowering people; social cohesion as a requirement in a globalized world; sustainability as a precondition of a more auspicious world. External audiences have granted legitimacy to SBPs through four types of legitimation: sameness, distinctiveness, cognitive and, to a less extent, socio-political.