Airbnb (ABNB) announced the introduction of over 100 product upgrades to tap the exceptional bounce back forecasted for the travel industry. The upgrades will enhance its support system and enable better matching between guests and hosts going forward.
The company has made meaningful changes to the Guest platform, which includes enhanced search capabilities to help people find their perfect stay and adding more flexibility to dates, matching options, and destinations.
In addition, the company has initiated a 10-step process on the Hosts front to simplify the listing process and enable anyone to become a host.
The company is doubling the number of support agents as well as broadening its language spectrum from 11 to 42 languages. (See Airbnb stock analysis on TipRanks)
Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky commented, “We are seeing three fundamental shifts in travel as people become less tethered and more flexible…. People can travel anytime, they are traveling to more places and they are staying longer. The lines between travel, living and working are blurring and we are upgrading our service to make it easier for people to integrate travel into their lives, and for more people to become Hosts.”
Following the upgrade announcement, BofA Securities analyst Justin Post maintained a Hold rating and a price target of $180 (31.5% upside potential) on the stock.
Post stated “Airbnb has also doubled the number of support agents for guests and hosts, and added 31 more languages vs. 2019 in addition to a dedicated Superhost support line (available in North America starting Sept. 30th). Other note-worthy updates include Guest side improvements to include seasonally-aware filters, wish-list sharing and full map search capabilities, etc. which we think will further improve match between guests and hosts.”
Overall, the stock has a Moderate Buy consensus rating based on 12 Buys, 17 Holds, and 1 Sell. The average analyst price target of $177.38 implies 31.3% upside potential from current levels.
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