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San Francisco-based Airbnb is making cash by helping people rent out their extra space to travelers
When Joe Gebbia, Brian Chesky, and Nathan Blecharczyk, co-founders of Airbnb decided to quit their jobs to become entrepreneurs, their funds quickly diminished. So they decided to start renting out the extra space in their apartment to travelers on a budget. Soon they realized this was their entrepreneurial calling - build a Website where people could turn their homes into a hotel business.
Airbnb, a Y Combinator-funded company, now refers to itself as the eBay of space.
From couches to tropical water villas, Airbnb now spans over 80 countries and has 25,000 users worldwide. Airbnb makes a 10% commission everytime somebody rents out their space. They are now profitable, keeping the company lean, and not looking for any big funding.
In this segment of Startup Sessions check out how the site works and how Airbnb embraces the startup culture.
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Airbnb.com is the “Ebay of space.” The online marketplace allows anyone from private residents to commercial properties to rent out their extra space. The reputation-based site allows for user reviews, verification, and online transactions, for which Airbnb takes a commission. As of June, 2009, the San Francisco-based company has listings in over 1062 cities in 76 countries.