Which is the biggest and the worst company offering alternative accommodation?
It's hard to say because Airbnb is a private company and its main competitor, Booking Holdings, has not sold its sales since vacation rentals and apartment rentals – until now.
Booking Holdings has released a series of unpublished information on its alternative hosting business, in conjunction with the release of its fourth quarter financial results and fiscal year 2018, Wednesday. Of these, Booking announced that it has recorded more than $ 1 billion in revenue from its shared home business in the third quarter, including vacation homes, apartments and unique properties that are not hotels.
In comparison, Airbnb revealed in November that its own revenue for the third quarter was "well over a billion dollars". Airbnb's revenue, however, probably also includes boutique hotels and experiences, for example.
For practical reasons, as it is difficult to verify one or another of the claims, let's call it the draw.
Airbnb has long been considered the undisputed leader of alternative accommodation, and may still be so. But the race, at least in terms of revenue, is certainly a lot tighter than we usually think.
Booking also revealed that it had generated $ 2.8 billion in revenue from alternative accommodation in 2018, or 20% of the company's total revenue, and that its business was "very profitable".
Officials said revenue growth for alternative housing "is growing faster than the company's consolidated growth rate," without specifying the percentage increase in revenues of $ 2.8 billion . Booking's total sales jumped 17% to $ 14.5 billion in 2018.
Booking also stated that its listings of homes and apartments reported in 2018 had jumped 18% to 5.7 million in 2018. "More than any other actor". Airbnb.com boasts more than 5 million listings.
Booking, which includes brands such as Booking.com, Priceline.com, Agoda, Kayak and OpenTable, for example, focuses on European hotels. On Wednesday, however, "40% of Booking.com's active clientele booked alternative accommodation in the last 12 months."
This new information is intended to provide investors with another snapshot of Booking's footprint on alternative accommodations, which would be a valuable set of metrics, particularly if Airbnb decides to launch an initial public offering, as many observers would like.
President and CEO Glenn Fogel said the company would use to expand its list of single-family homes for rent, especially on beaches and ski resorts in the United States. It also invests more in the Booking.com payment system, which allows vacation rental owners to avoid credit card payments in favor of advance payments according to the merchant's model.
In the fourth quarter, Booking's net earnings were $ 646 million, including $ 474 million of losses related to equity investments related to the required accounting changes. The fourth-quarter sales figure rose 16% to $ 3.2 billion.
The company announced that it would step up its investments in brand marketing, merchandising and staff in 2019, which would have a negative impact on growth in pre-tax income, debt and amortization.
Managing Director Fogel said Europe, which is home to Booking's core business, was slowing down, exacerbated by Brexit uncertainty, US-China trade war rhetoric and such as the protests against the yellow jacket in France.
Photo Credit: Booking Holdings reports that 40% of its active customers have booked alternative accommodation in the last 12 months. Booking.com