Airbnb joins Western corporate shutdowns in Russia

Illustration shows Airbnb app
Airbnb app is seen on a smartphone in this illustration taken, February 27, 2022. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

March 4, 2022

(Reuters) -Home rental company Airbnb Inc on Thursday became the latest big global firm to halt operations in Russia as Western sanctions build against Moscow for invading Ukraine.

Chief Executive Officer Brian Chesky tweeted the suspension, which also includes Russian ally Belarus. It aligns his company with other major Western names including General Motors Co, Boeing Co and Alphabet Inc’s Google.

“People are booking Airbnbs in Ukraine they don’t intend to stay in just to help Hosts,” Chesky added, noting a way some outsiders have found to send financial support to Ukrainians.

Airbnb, which is recovering from a pandemic-induced lull, has forecast bumper first-quarter results on strong demand in the United States and longer stays by guests.

It did not immediately respond to a request for additional details on the suspensions in Russia and Belarus. Europe, the Middle East and Africa is Airbnb’s second-biggest market after North America.

Shares of the short-term home rental company were down 1.4% before the bell.

Airbnb said on Monday its non-profit arm would offer free, temporary housing for up to 100,000 refugees fleeing Ukraine.

(Reporting by Bhargav Acharya and Aishwarya Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Christopher Cushing and Aditya Soni)

View original article here Source