Airbnb Adds Heat to the IPO Boom

On its first day of trading, Airbnb shares closed up nearly 113% to $144.71 apiece, giving the lodging platform a market capitalization of nearly $100 billion.

Airbnb began trading on the Nasdaq today under the ticker ABNB. The company, which raised $3.5 billion in its IPO, set the price of its initial public offering at $68 a share, valuing Airbnb at $47.3 billion on a fully diluted basis. This was higher than the expected $56-$60 share price range.

The short-term rental company now has a market value greater than Hilton Hotels, Marriott International, and Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, as investors bet on the issuer benefiting from a widespread vaccine distribution.

Founded in 2008, Airbnb upended the hotel industry by tapping into travelers’ desire for local, authentic experiences. The majority of its revenue comes from service fees from bookings charged to both guests and hosts that use its platform.

While Airbnb saw its bookings plummet and revenue tumble in early 2020 as the coronavirus pandemic shut down global travel, the company was able to bounce back over the summer as travelers sought nearby vacation rentals to escape cities and take advantage of work-from-home policies.

News of Airbnb’s successful IPO comes one day after DoorDash’s public markets debut, where the food delivery company saw its stock jump 86% to give it a market capitalization of $72 billion.