Airbnb shares dropped by 12 percent Wednesday despite the online rental company beating expectations with revenue and earnings per share in its first-quarter earnings report. Airbnb had weak forward guidance and a cautious outlook this year’s second quarter.
CNBC reported on the company’s better-than-expected financial results, where Airbnb had earnings per share of 18 cents compared to an expected 9 cents. Revenue was reported to be $1.82 billion versus an expected $1.79 billion. Total revenue increased 20 percent year-over-year alongside a net profit of $117 million. Airbnb stated the year was off to a “strong start” and anticipates a “strong summer travel season,” according to its letter to shareholders.
However, looking ahead to 2Q23, year-over-year comparisons will look unfavorable since this time last year, pent-up travel demand led to a surge in bookings. The company said, “However, it warned that second-quarter comparisons would be tough, saying, “Nights and Experiences Booked will have unfavorable year-over-year comparisons in Q2 2023 as we overlap pent-up 2022 demand following the COVID Omicron variant.” Airbnb has forecast revenue next quarter to be anywhere from $2.35 billion to $2.45 billion.
Airbnb has also been criticized for biased treatment of users, particularly conservative political commentators. Last year, Breitbart reported:
Conservative author and journalist Michelle Malkin and her husband were banned by Airbnb as “retaliation” for her engaging in free speech at a conference last November. Malkin says: “The speech delved into the K-20 metastasis of anti-white curriculum, the corporate media’s whitewashing of black-on-Asian attacks, and the long campaign to censor nationalist dissidents who put America first,” adding that “San Francisco-based Airbnb notified me that I was banned from using its services ever again and imperiously deleted my account.”
Conservative activist Lauren Southern was banned from using the home-sharing platform for her political “affiliations”. Southern’s parents were also banned from Airbnb for seemingly being related to her. However, after pushback, Airbnb reversed the ban on Lauren’s parents claiming it was a mistake. Southern tweeted:
My parents just got banned from AirBnB for being related to me. They have never booked anything for me. They do not represent me in any way. They aren’t publicly political in any way. How is this sane in any way @Airbnb
The $300 cleaning fees for a $200 rental are cringe and exploitative anyways. Support local hotels! My parents are some of the sweetest people I know. They were just planning a romantic getaway, they aren’t political activists. 🙁 All I’ve learned is that if governments and corporations can’t shut you up by harming you, they’ll now go for your families.
Further context: I was banned years ago for my politics and “affiliations” as well. How many degrees of “affiliations” can AirBnB realistically ban people for? Will friends of my parents now be banned? Cousins? Second cousins? (yes I appealed, it went nowhere)
My parents just got banned from AirBnB for being related to me.
They have never booked anything for me. They do not represent me in any way. They aren't publicly political in any way.
— Lauren Southern (@Lauren_Southern) February 7, 2023
Southern rejected Airbnb’s apology for the banning, stating, “There has definitely been a Pandora’s box opened in the culture war. I think progressives have realized with the laws we have In place defending civil liberties, they can’t bring a social credit system in yet, so they found a way to circumvent it through the corporate class. They can just impose a social credit system on this using Big Tech.”
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