Airbnb announces plan to go public in 2020

Airbnb announces plan to go public in 2020
  • Airbnb plans to issue its much anticipated IPO in 2020
  • The company will be following in the footsteps of other tech unicorns including Uber, Lyft, Slack, and Pinterest that went public during the year.
  • Airbnb is keen on doing a direct issue instead of using third-party platforms

In an announcement dated 19th September 2019, Airbnb made known its intention to become a publicly-traded company – just not this year though.

The rental startup which was last valued at $31 billion in 2017 is set to become one of the last unicorns to aim for the stock market. While some of its brethren face tough times since listing, the tech company is positive that its recent numbers spanning $1 billion in revenue for the second quarter signify the coming of a new era.

In a one-sentence announcement, the property rental company remained non-committal on the exact date of their intended IPO but promised to make a public offering “during 2020”. The announcement came only a day after they said they had more than seven million listings circa 100,000 cities globally.

Several investors and analysts had expected the firm to go public some time this year, around the same time when its tech peers, including Pinterest, Zoom, Uber, and Lyft made the move. Once they go public and being one of the highest valued tech startups, Airbnb’s IPO is expected to be the greatest blockbuster of all time.

The firm’s property listings continue to be the biggest drivers of their revenues – users who list their homes on the platform have earned an aggregate of more than $80 billion since its launch. According to the company’s data, more than 1,000 listed cities feature an excess of 1,000 listings, a number that stood at 12 eight years back.

With more than $30 billion in private valuation, Airbnb will go down in history as having issued one of the highest valued IPOs since this year’s spring when other big unicorns went public.

It is only typical of a tech startup to keep its cards close to its chest. Airbnb’s statement on going public at a later year came in as a surprise to many. However, according to confidential sources, the move is expected to grant its “hosts” with property listings on the site, sufficient time to explore the option of acquiring a stake in the company. The Securities regulations require Airbnb to fully disclose its intentions to go public before offering its hosts a stake in the company.

The tech firm is said to be considering nonconventional IPO methods such as a direct listing. Direct listings or direct placements allow companies to sell their shares directly to the members of the public without using any third-party intermediaries. The method is fast gaining popularity among tech companies, high-profile brands including Slack and Spotify have already used it.

By Damian Wood
As an experienced trader, I work for myself managing my own small portfolio and also contributing on several investment news sites. I mix my passion for the industry and journalism to bring my readers informative and trustworthy articles.
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