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Airbnb gearing up for an IPO

Company boasts a $31 billion private valuation


CEO Brian Chesky (Credit: Airbnb)

Airbnb hired Dave Stephenson, a long-time Amazon executive as its new CFO, according to Bloomberg. With a private valuation of about $31 billion, this move signals that an IPO is near for the home-sharing company.

Why it matters: CEO Brian Chesky has already stated that Airbnb has an internal deadline of 2020 when some employee stock grants expire. Since the founders and early employees have already cashed in on at least $350 million worth of equity, Chesky found no incentive to expedite the process.

Former CFO Laurence Tosi helped the company become profitable… He used a portion of capital from the company’s balance sheet to run an internal hedge fund. The side project represented 30 percent of the company’s cash flow two years ago making about $5 million a month for Airbnb. Tosi was an early investor in the startup, and previously worked at Blackstone and Merrill.

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