Airbnb has taken the first steps to filing for a proposed initial public offering.
The San Francisco-based company “confidentially submitted a draft Registration Statement on Form S-1 to the Securities and Exchange Commission,” it says on its website.
How many shares will be offered and what they’ll cost is to-be-determined.
The SEC now has to review the proposal.
Airbnb’s private valuation is reportedly $26 billion, down from $31 billion before the global COVID-19 pandemic decimated the travel industry.
After people started sheltering in place, the company introduced Online Experiences in April to keep those stuck at home entertained with activities such as scavenger hunts, coffee master classes, magic shows, cooking demos, and fitness workouts.
Airbnb also has reported the growing popularity of rural properties in areas with fewer than 100 inhabitants per kilometer. Hosts in those rural areas earned more than $200 million in June, a jump of more than 25% over the same month in 2019.
However, in May, cofounder and CEO Brian Chesky announced plans to lay off close to 1,900 employees, or an estimated one-quarter of the company’s workforce.
Changes are already underway
This morning, less than 24 hours after the IPO news, Airbnb announced a global party ban, citing public health concerns. The new rules, which apply to all future bookings and are in place until further notice, means large homes that previously listed as able to accommodate more than 16 people will now be capped at 16, though the company is exploring an exception process for hospitality venues, like boutique hotels. People who fail to abide by the new no-party policy could be banned from Airbnb and sued.
“Some have chosen to take bar and club behavior to homes, sometimes rented through our platform,” the company said in its announcement. “We think such conduct is incredibly irresponsible—we do not want that type of business, and anyone engaged in or allowing that behavior does not belong on our platform.”