Airbnb soars after earnings as one analyst calls it ‘the best asset in travel’

Tech

Co-founder and CEO of Airbnb Brian Chesky speaks during an interview in Langa township, Cape Town, South Africa March 17, 2017.

Mike Hutchings | Reuters

Airbnb’s stock was up as much as 16% on Friday following a number of analyst reports highlighting that the company is well positioned to capitalize on the expected recovery in the travel industry.

Jefferies, Canaccord Genuity and Mizhuo Securities raised their price targets for Airbnb after the company delivered its first earnings report on Thursday since its initial public offering in December. The company posted a net loss of $3.89 billion, largely attributed to charges related to its IPO, but it posted fourth quarter revenue of $859 million, ahead of analysts’ expectations of $748 million.

“We continue to believe that ABNB remains the best asset in travel, and we like the fact that cost reductions have positioned the Co. well for the recovery in travel,” wrote Jefferies, which raised its price target for Airbnb from $170 to $210.

In its report, Mizuho wrote that it expects room night trends for Airbnb to return to the company’s 2019 levels in the second half of 2021. Mizuho raised its price target for Airbnb from $150 to $176.

“Heading into 1Q21, we expect room night trends to improve with a meaningful recovery in 2H21,” Mizuho wrote.

Canaccord Genuity, meanwhile, raised its price target for Airbnb from $175 to $220. Canaccord Genuity specifically highlighted a marketing campaigned announced by Airbnb’s executives to recruit more hosts for the service.

“Pent-up travel desires and the work from anywhere trend has already led to lower supply availability in North America, and management is planning for a material travel rebound this year by prioritizing expanding supply, including a marketing plan targeted at hosts and a simplification of host onboarding,” Canaccord Genuity wrote.

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