In a move demonstrating its increasing interest in business travel, Airbnb has acquired Gaest.com
Gaest.com, an online marketplace designed to help meeting and event planners find inspiring spaces for short-term rentals (hours or days), was founded in 2015 in Denmark. It now operates across six continents on a platform similar to that of Airbnb, where hosts can list their spaces and also provide other add-ons to enhance the experience.
As the demand for more creative, flexible meeting spaces continues to rise, increased access to such spaces that are easy to find, book and utilize is also growing. Many platforms similar to Gaest.com have sprung up around the world in the last few years, though few with a reach as wide.
“We’re thrilled to join one of the world’s most innovative companies and become an integral part of their mission to make it easier for professionals to feel a sense of belonging at work,” said Anders Mogensen, co-founder and CEO of Gaest.com.
He continued, “Our dream from day one has been to make it easier, faster and more cost-effective to list, discover and book unique spaces that spark creativity, motivate interaction and encourage knowledge sharing.”
The acquisition of Gaest.com will expand Airbnb’s creative meeting listings by more than 3,000 spaces. Planners will still be able to book spaces using Gaest.com’s platform on its website, so the user experience won’t be changing. Currently, you can search for venues based on time of your event, number of people, budget, audiovisual features and other offerings (like catering and entertainment options).
The listings are heavily concentrated in the UK and Denmark, as well as other countries like Sweden and Australia; there are no listings in the U.S. as of now, but that could be changing in the near future.
“We imagine a world where anyone can share their space for professional events,” said David Holyoke, global head of Airbnb for Work, the company’s platform for business travelers that encompasses accommodations, team building activities (through Airbnb Experiences) and finding Wi-Fi-equipped creative workspaces.
“Bringing in a leadership team with strong domain knowledge allows us to accelerate our work in this area, and more importantly, Gaest.com and Airbnb share a vision of helping every space owner become entrepreneurs through sharing their spaces with those who need it,” Holyoke added.
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