Why Airbnb Fails to Disrupt the Hotel Industry

Cost is the biggest barrier to scale in the hotel industry. It takes on average 2-3 years to build a hotel. The upfront cost for design, permits, and construction can range from $30M to $130M, depending on location and category. These estimates don’t even include the cost of the land. Since these numbers are publicly shared by nearly every hotel giant, it’s no secret how cost prohibitive it is to grow market share in the hotel industry.

Airbnb’s innovation is on the supply side. Anyone can list and monetize their room, apartment, or house with a few steps on Airbnb. The company’s business value is to serve as a trusted platform between travelers and hosts. Discovery, communication, and transactions between both parties all occur on Airbnb. Hosts set their own prices for their listings, provide service, and accept travelers in whatever way they see fit.

So why aren’t hotel executives scared of Airbnb? Are Hilton, Marriott, Hyatt executives all just pretending not to care publicly but freaking out privately in boardrooms? Are the hotel giants just too stubborn to evolve?

0:00 Intro
1:22 Hotel Operating Model
2:19 Seasonal Business
3:11 Main Hotel Categories
3:38 Hilton (Overview, Portfolio, Performance)
4:55 Marriott (Overview, Portfolio, Performance)
5:44 IHG (Overview, Portfolio, Performance)
6:14 Hyatt (Overview, Portfolio, Performance)
7:01 Wyndham (Overview, Portfolio, Performance)
7:50 Rise of Airbnb & Industry Response
13:02 Supply-side Innovation
15:09 Outperforming at Scale
16:38 Why Hotels Don’t Fear Airbnb
17:12 The Traditional Owner-Operated Model
19:52 Misconceptions & Historical Tradition
22:46 Relic of the Past
24:24 The Platforms of Future Past
25:09 Quantity is not Quality