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Airbnb reports soaring revenue as travel rebounds

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Home rental platform Airbnb predicts record-high revenue as signs point to a banner travel season despite broad economic woes./AFP
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Aug 03, 2022 - 07:02 AM

SAN FRANCISCO — Airbnb said Tuesday revenue in the recently ended quarter topped $2 billion as people shook off pandemic worries and took part in a banner travel season.

The home rental platform logged a net income of $379 million in what it touted as the most profitable second quarter in its history.

As a sign of confidence in its future, the San Francisco-based company announced it will devote $2 billion to buying back shares.

“During the height of the pandemic, we made many difficult choices to reduce our spending, making us a leaner and more focused company,” the company said in a letter to investors.

“Airbnb is well positioned for whatever lies ahead.”

More than 103 million nights and travel “experiences” arranged by Airbnb were booked during the quarter, setting a new high, despite inflation and other broad economic woes, the company reported.

The $2.1 billion in revenue taken in during the quarter was 58 percent higher than the same period a year earlier.

“We are in the midst of our strongest peak travel season yet,” Airbnb said in the letter.

“On July 4th, we recorded our highest single day revenue ever, signaling the strong summer season ahead.”

Airbnb expects to set a new revenue record in the current quarter, bringing in between $2.78 billion and $2.88 billion.

“We have nearly every type of space in nearly every location, so however travel changes, we are able to adapt,” Airbnb said.

“Regardless of the economic environment, our guests come to Airbnb because they can find great value, and our hosts can earn extra income.”

The optimism came despite Airbnb shutting down its business in China early this year as pandemic lockdowns show no sign of ending there.

Airbnb in July stopped booking stays or visitor “experiences” in China, focusing instead on helping people there with travel plans outside the country, the company said in an earnings report.

“We made this difficult decision based on the costly and complex challenges of operating in the country, exacerbated by the severe Covid lockdowns,” Airbnb said.

“We continue to expect Asia Pacific, including outbound travel from China, to represent a significant growth opportunity for Airbnb over the long term.”

Airbnb launched its business in China six years ago, and has booked stays there for some 25 million guests. Bookings at residences in China have accounted for only one percent of Airbnb reservations in recent years, the company has reported.

Airbnb faced strong competition in China.

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