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Vacasa, which helps hosts not only list but also manage their rental homes, is considering becoming a publicly traded stock to capitalize on the anticipated rebound in the vacation business as Covid vaccinations accelerate across the US and federal levels, according to CNBC State governments are repealing virus reduction measures.
The Portland, Oregon based company is considering an IPO, direct listing, or merger with a SPAC company for special purpose acquisitions.
In a CNBC interview, Vacasa CEO Matt Roberts said “no comment” on questions about whether the company plans to go public. However, he spoke about Vacasa’s future from a business perspective, saying the company expects to “generate more than $ 1.25 billion in gross bookings in 2021, an all-time high for us”. That’s roughly double what it was in 2019, which was before the coronavirus pandemic decimated the travel industry.
From monitoring requests to repairing a broken toilet to increasing the number of nights a home is booked, Vacasa helps homeowners manage the entire end-to-end process of renting a property, either short or long term manage. Founded in 2009, a year after Airbnb, the company sets itself apart from the online rental giant and Expedia’s offerings in providing end-to-end services. While Vacasa operates its own rental market, it also provides rental properties to Airbnb and Expedia.
“We create supply for the market. Retail through our distribution partners. … That makes us different. We are actually the ones who make the product on the shelf,” said Roberts.
Danielle Martini, whose home in Rockaway Beach, Oregon is listed on Vacasa, told CNBC, “One of my favorite things is the owners’ portal … where I can compare my bookings to last year. when there’s a new booking. It’s pretty cute. “
One of my favorite things is the owner portal … where I can compare my bookings with the previous year. I also receive email notifications when there is a new booking. It’s pretty cute.
Martini’s family lives in Spokane, Washington – seven hours from their second home – which makes it difficult to manage the property on a regular basis.
“We’re basically breaking even … maybe we’ll make some money,” Martini said of Vacasa, which is charged a 35% commission. But that’s fine, she said, because she and her husband view their beachfront property as a longer-term investment that they will hopefully retire in a day.
When her mother was diagnosed with Parkinson’s, Danielle Martini began to think more seriously about the next phase of life. Last year she and her husband paid off part of their 401 (k) money to buy their dream vacation home.
“I told my husband that we can’t be like my parents. We need a place to retire. We have to manage it efficiently to cover our costs, but also to make sure that one day we have more Spend time out there, “she said.
On the east coast in Ocean City, Maryland, Patrick Brady is slowly expanding his portfolio of houses: Brooklyn Estate, Brooklyn Cottage and Brooklyn Meadows – all named after his daughter Brooklyn, who helps him repair all of their properties.
Brady started investing in homes in 2015. After purchasing a large six bedroom property, he listed the property on Vacasa. “I was shocked at how many bookings it brought me.”
I was shocked at how many bookings it brought me.
The battle for a vacation rental is increasing the pressure and pressure on homeowners to keep pace with demand and ensure their tenants are satisfied. But it can be a time-consuming process, and a bad review can affect your ability to attract new guests.
As the manager of three restaurants, Brady was motivated to find a real estate manager who could help oversee the whole process and make sure it was profitable.
“Vacasa handles guest inquiries and processes payments. One-stop-shop is a one-stop shop,” said Brady.
However, the competition is fierce. Airbnb and Expedia are both investing in their business models, while Marriott continues to build its small but growing market share through its Home & Villas platform.
Starting last year, Expedia deployed a large sales team to attract Airbnb’s most valuable and experienced homeowners. A strategy was followed that included a mix of direct targeting and social media.
Last month, several sources recently told CNBC that Expedia had recruited superhosts from Airbnb in the battle for high-quality vacation rentals. Expedia did not respond to a request for comment.
In a separate conversation, Cyril Ranque, president of Expedia’s Travel Partner Group, told CNBC: “There is a battle over supplies.”
Expedia launched its quick start program late last month that allows homeowners to transfer their superhost status from a competing website. This way, you don’t have to start over on VRBO, Expedia’s rental platform.
At Vacasa, however, Roberts is betting that once people get out of their covid bubbles, a shortage of quality rental apartments will continue to drive more homeowners and travelers to its website and the rest of the world. He said demand is so high that he expects over 90% occupancy in popular vacation destinations like the Outer Banks of North Carolina this summer.