US-based multinational hospitality company Airbnb cofounder and CEO Brian Chesky is optimistic about the revival of the pandemic-stricken travel and hospitality sector of India.
Chesky said the pandemic has “irreversibly altered” the travel industry.
“We had to make a lot of very difficult decisions and had to essentially restructure the company,” Chesky told at the ET Global Business Summit.
Speaking on investments, Chesky said that he is extremely bullish on India and was planning a long-term investment in the country.
On the company’s initial public offering (IPO) plans, he said that they are planning to go public when the market was ready for Airbnb. The company has also filed a registration statement with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
“I think this is the early part of the very first chapter of the India community on Airbnb and I’m really excited to help the platform enable tens of thousands and, one day, millions of people become entrepreneurs as hosts on Airbnb in India and allow people in India to not only experience India but experience nearly every country in the world,” he told.
Founded in 2008 by Brian Chesky, Joe Gebbia and Nathan Blecharczyk, Airbnb’s accommodation marketplace provides access to seven million unique places to stay in more than 100K cities and 191 countries and regions.
The US-based company, which started its operations in India in 2016, it has amassed about 45K listings in India with Goa as the company’s most popular market with 6K listings.
The company’s business in India has doubled in terms of guests year-on-year, and so far 1.8 Mn Indians have used Airbnb since its launch.
According to an IBEF report, India is expected to be ranked among the top five business travel markets globally by 2030, as business travel spending in the country is expected to triple until 2030 from $30 Bn in 2015.
The report also highlights India’s international tourist travels are expected to reach 30 Mn by 2028. Moreover, the report points out that medical tourism will reach $9 Bn by 2020.