Airbnb Closes $1B Round of Funding

Airbnb recently continued its transformation of the travel industry when the hospitality giant closed a $1 billion round of funding, according to a March 9 CNBC article. The company is now worth an astounding $31 billion.

Since its founding in 2008, Airbnb has raised more than $3 billion. The company also became profitable in the second quarter of 2016, securing enough funds to delay plans to launch an initial public offering (I.P.O.), according to Airbnb’s newly-filed forms with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Airbnb has long been on the radar as a potential IPO candidate, and its completed funding round comes at the heels of Snap’s I.P.O. Snapchat, whose high private value was similar to Airbnb's, saw its shares seized immediately upon public debut, yielding a $3.4 billion I.P.O.

However, CEO Brian Chesky indicated in an interview with The New York Times that Airbnb would not be opposed to an eventual public offering. 

“I think companies should go public when it’s the best thing for the mission, but we don’t have those immediate needs,” Chesky said. While Airbnb has not released an official statement regarding plans for its newly-acquired capital, the company has recently been harnessing its billions in venture capital funding to make investments of its own. It recently confirmed acquisitions of payments startup Tilt and vacation rentals manager Luxury Retreat for hundreds of millions, in conjunction with announcing its intent to invest in restaurant reservation app Resy.

Coupled with the launch of new features that expand Airbnb’s offerings—such as “Trips” and “Experiences” that enable vacationers to book unique activities through Airbnb’s platform—the investments and the recently-acquired funding set the hospitality company in the perfect position to accomplish its goal of becoming a “one-stop- shop” for travel across the globe.

- Namrata