Airbnb is to buy the hotel booking site Hotel Tonight for an undisclosed sum.
It is reported that Airbnb
is making the purchase as part of its strategy to become the ‘go to’ place for booking
travel. The purchase also comes at a time when Airbnb is said to be preparing
to go public in the US.
Hotel Tonight is relatively little known in the UK, where hotel booking sites like Hotels.com and Booking.com are more widely recognised. However, the site is better known in the US and elsewhere in the Americas. Since start up in 2010 it is said to have served over 15m users.
The purchase is an interesting one from a property point of view: Airbnb has been something of a thorn in the side of the hotel industry in recent years, as it has allowed individual property owners to compete with them. It has also come in for much criticism in some cities as a result of its impact on the local property market. This purchase could be seen as either a defensive move by Airbnb, or the start of an ambitious plan to take on its detractors.
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