Spotlight: It’s a full house at Airbnb

by

Jack Derwin

August 5th 2022 3 minute read

Forget all the talk about the ‘new normal’ because Airbnb and Uber are showing us that it’s just like things used to be. Holiday bookings and rideshare numbers have now either returned to or surpassed pre-pandemic levels as the world gets out and about (it sure beats sitting around at home, that’s for sure). These are big five stories from the week that was.

1. Knock knock

Holidays have well and truly kicked off and Airbnb is reaping the rewards, renting out more homes last quarter than ever before.

Some 103 million nights were booked over the 91-day period, with long-term stays and the North American market the fastest growing segments.

It helped mint a quarterly profit of US$379 million, compared to a loss the same time last year.

Airbnb says it isn’t worried about a recession, claiming it would simply boost listings. Of course, that might not be for the best

2. Fat stacks

Uber has proved it can actually make money, turning cash flow positive for the first time ever on the back of a near record number of rides. 

Uber generated US$364 million net cash during the last quarter. That’s a huge milestone considering it has burned through US$25 billion since 2009.

Uber shares popped 19% on the back of the news as the business gets closer than ever to being profitable. DoorDash followed it higher.

3. On repeat 

TikTok could be about to launch its own music streaming service, putting it on a potential collision course with Spotify and Apple.

The expansion makes a lot of sense. On hearing a new song in a video, two in three users go on to listen to it elsewhere.

In fact, so powerful is TikTok as a marketing tool that artists are using it to ensure a hit goes viral before the song is even available. Watch this space. 

4. Ground control

Coinbase shares soared by up to 40% overnight after the exchange received a call up to the big leagues.

Institutional investors at BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager in charge of US$10 trillion, will use the platform to trade crypto.

Given the size of its client base (which includes sovereign wealth funds) and the potential scale of those trades – it’s big news.

5. EV wrap 

Fisker says it will begin production on its first electric SUV in November as it looks to cut costs. The company has so far taken 56,000 pre-orders.

Elsewhere customers are left waiting to receive the luxury Lucid Air with the automaker set to make just 7,000 of its 37,000 orders this year.

Meanwhile rival Nikola bought a battery maker this week for US$144 million. It projects the investment will have paid for itself within two years.

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