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Airbnb To Halt Marketing, Hiring And Employee Bonuses As It Fights For Survival Amid Global Pandemic

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Airbnb is putting a stop to all of its marketing, most of its hiring, and might even withhold employee bonuses in a bid to conserve cash amid a slide in patronage. Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky broke the news to employees in a video conference call.

 

The start-up, last valued at $31Million, is taking drastic steps as it measures how cancellations due to coronavirus are impacting its finances. Airbnb offered its customers in areas affected by bans on travel a full refund. The breakout of the COVID-19 epidemic has hugely affected the travel and tourism industry.

 

Airbnb’s founders will take home no salary and its executives will also see a 50% salary cut reduction for the next six months.

 

Employees were also told that it is unlikely that they will get their bonus for 2020. The hiring freeze will affect all roles except very few critical positions, according to the CNBC. Airbnb will also halt all of its marketing.

 

Airlines, ride-hailing start-ups like Uber and Lyft as well as hotel bookings are bearing the brunt of the pandemic, as millions are staying at home as they observe social distancing. The US Travel Association says that the industry will lose about 4.6 million jobs in 2020.

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Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky

 

The Wall Street Journal reported in February 2020 that Airbnb lost $322 million over the first nine months of 2019. This, after listing a $200 million profit in 2018.

 

An Airbnb spokesman told Business Insider that the startup “is resilient and built to withstand tough times and we’re doing all we can to strengthen our community and our company.”

 

More than 585,040 cases of the coronavirus have been recorded worldwide with at least 26,819 deaths. In the US, the toll is over 100,000 cases of the coronavirus with at least 1,475 deaths.

 

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