Inside Airbnb’s Battle To Go Public Or Stay Private
Airbnb co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky announced the home-sharing behemoth will not pursue an IPO this year.
"Let me address this directly. We are not going public in 2018. Our primary focus is becoming a 21st-century company and advancing our mission. We’re working on getting ready to go public and we will make decisions about going public on our own timetable," Chesky said in a statement.
The news coincided with an internal restructuring, which included the resignation of Chief Financial Officer Laurence Tosi — who had reportedly been shopping around for investors — and the promotion of Belinda Johnson, who was previously in charge of business affairs and legal, to chief operating officer.
Airbnb took further action to shut down the claims of an initial public offering, saying in a statement that “any individual currently or formerly associated with the company in a position to have knowledge communicating that the company had plans to go public in 2018 would have been misrepresenting the facts," Bloomberg reports.
While the home-sharing giant has been approached by companies such as SoftBank, which expressed a desire to take a stake in the company, the home-sharing company remains hesitant to engage in such a move. Other sources have attributed the resistance to the fact that it is still missing some key personnel, including a chief marketing officer and in the wake of Tosi's resignation, a chief financial officer, according to Bloomberg.
In recent months, the company has also experienced some growing pains in its major markets around the globe, with demand declining in metros like New York, Paris, Rome, London, Barcelona and Amsterdam.