The San Francisco Business Times’s Riley McDermid predicts that the San Francisco-based short-term rental company Airbnb might soon go public, given that its investors will soon want to see returns.
Airbnb currently has a market capitalization bigger than both Hilton and Marriott, and expects $10 billion in revenue by 2020. It is currently the third most valuable privately held company in the world, after Uber and Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi Corp.
"Those venture funds are going to want the return on that investment, and since it's unlikely that Airbnb might be bought by another company at its now incredibly lofty valuation, an IPO is the likeliest eventual exit," Business Insider reports.
"So while it's unlikely that will happen in 2017, an eventual IPO is probably not far off."
Airbnb has taken multiple measures to forestall going public, according to people familiar with the matter, including a $850 million funding drive and $200 million employee stock sale.