Airbnb isn’t a fad. It’s a successful business supported by serious investors who recognize an idea that has proven and sustainable earning potential.
With a current market valuation of $25.5 billion Airbnb has attracted the attention of leaders in the financial industry. Anton Levy, Managing Director of General Atlantic, sits on their board of directors. Does that sound like fly-by-night business to you?
Recent media reports have highlighted Airbnb problems. Some renters have returned home to find their homes in ruins because their guests didn’t follow Airbnb’s guidelines for being a considerate guest.
So why do people become hosts? Because Airbnb provides a source of income for people who live in interesting, quirky, beautiful, or popular locations. The revenue they make can be used for the prosaic financial tasks we all share—food, clothing, or health care. However, some hosts devote their Airbnb income to making their dreams come true while supporting a worthy cause like conservation.
The Airbnb revenue stream isn’t limited to people who chose to list their property for rent on the website. Some locations with a concentration of properties have attracted the attention of local entrepreneurs providing a bespoke tourist experience for Airbnb guests.
Maxine Daniels is the owner of I Bike Harlem, a bike tour service in the iconic New York City neighborhood. Daniels knows more than 1,000 Airbnb hosts in the area and invited them to a reception at her shop.
“Airbnb sends out a monthly newsletter to their network of hosts in the neighborhood, and they always include I Bike Harlem in their newsletter, asking hosts to make sure they invite their guests to take tours with us, and they also do social media posts promoting us,” Daniels said in an article on Skift.
She went on to say, “Most of the people I’ve had on my tours so far have found us on either TripAdvisor or Airbnb, and I’m still figuring out a way to track which hosts are funneling the most guests to my tours. So far the hosts have been very helpful and point their guests in my direction if they’re looking for something local to do in the neighborhood.”
Could Airbnb be a catalyst for business growth in your neighborhood? Learn how the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce partnered with Airbnb to boost tourism in their community.