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Airbnb, an online platform for listing and renting local homes, has announced that it will receive a billion-dollar investment from Silver Lake and Sixth Street Partners.
In a press release, Airbnb stated that the funds will be used to support its partners, who list their homes as accommodations or carry out Airbnb Experiences, a feature that offers tours and activities.
The investment will help address losses that were caused by several cancellations. Analytics firm AirDNA reported that 80% of Airbnb bookings for the first half of April were canceled because of COVID-19-related restrictions. However, reports also revealed that Airbnb was already enduring losses even before the pandemic started.
Aside from announcing the investment, Airbnb also revealed that it has allotted $250 million to help its partners. The fund will be used to compensate for 25% of the partners’ income losses. Out of the $250 million fund, $5 million will go to the Superhost Relief Fund, which benefits partners who manage highly rated or popular spaces and longtime Airbnb Experiences hosts.
With the investment, the company also plans to expand its long-term accommodations for clients who are relocating for work and studies, as these clients are less affected by travel restrictions.
Silver Lake executive Egon Durban said that although the current situation is holding back the hospitality industry from resuming regular operations, people’s desire for traveling and gaining new experiences remains significant. He believes Airbnb can still thrive once the world recovers from the setbacks brought about by the pandemic.
Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky vowed that the company will strive to recover from its losses. He is positive that many people will want to travel after the global health crisis ends.