Airbnb is about to face some more competition in the U.S. with Marriott’s reported entrance into the home-sharing business. On the heels of a successful home-sharing pilot in Europe, Marriott is gearing up to launch a home rentals product in the U.S., according to the Wall Street Journal. Marriott is expected to make the plans public as early as next month.
While Marriott is the largest hotel operator with 1.29 million guest rooms around the globe, according to STR, Airbnb is the largest room provider with 4.92 million listings on its platform, according to AirDNA.
Marriott’s entrance into the U.S. comes after its home-sharing pilot in Europe, where it offered nearly 400 homes to customers in Paris, Rome, Lisbon and London. The timing of its product is notable, given Airbnb’s recent acquisition of HotelTonight and its impending initial public offering. However, Airbnb is actively trying to become more than just a home-sharing platform, with hotel booking, travel arrangements for business trips, experiences and even original programming.
In January, Airbnb said it was profitable on an EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) basis for the second year in a row in 2018.
I’ve reached out to Marriott and will update this story if I hear back.