Business

Airbnb valued at $101.6 billion in biggest U.S. IPO of 2020

The IPO highlights a stunning recovery in Airbnb's fortunes after the firm's business was heavily damaged by the pandemic

Photo: REUTERS/Carlo Allegri
  • The surge at opening adds billions to what was already a blockbuster payday for founders Brian Chesky, Nathan Blecharczyk and Joseph Gebbia;
  • Including securities such as options and restricted stock units, its fully diluted valuation came to $101.6 billion.

Shares of Airbnb soared in their stock market debut on Thursday, valuing the home rental firm at $101.6 billion in the biggest U.S. flotation of 2020 and capping a bumper year that saw investors flock to tech darlings.

READ ALSO: The biggest U.S IPO of the year: Airbnb prices shares above target

Shares opened at $146 on the Nasdaq, far above the initial public offering (IPO) price of $68 apiece that raised $3.5 billion for the company.

The IPO highlights a stunning recovery in Airbnb’s fortunes after the firm’s business was heavily damaged by the COVID-19 pandemic earlier this year.

Founded in 2008 as a website to take bookings for rooms during conferences, Airbnb was valued at just $18 billion in a private fundraising round in April and $31 billion in its last pre-COVID-19 private fundraising in 2017.

READ ALSO: Airbnb nonprofit to focus on finding housing for disaster, pandemic workers

The surge at opening adds billions to what was already a blockbuster payday for founders Brian Chesky, Nathan Blecharczyk and Joseph Gebbia and investors including Sequoia Capital and Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund.

This year has seen a string of stellar debuts by technology startups including Wednesday’s launch of DoorDash, which valued the food delivery company at more than four times the figure from a private fundraising round six months ago.

At $146, Airbnb had a market capitalization of about $87.2 billion, compared with Booking Holdings‘ $86.3 billion and Marriot International‘s $42.3 billion.

READ ALSO: Airbnb boosts IPO price range in sign of frenzied investor appetite

Including securities such as options and restricted stock units, its fully diluted valuation came to $101.6 billion.