Two stories have emerged this week that paint different pictures about the ongoing success of Airbnb.
Earlier this week, investment bank Morgan Stanley issued a note on its views of the company which said that growth at the alternative accommodation platform may have plateaued. The chart below shows the company's research into Airbnb usage and forecasts for the future.
Most important are the middle bars which show that actual usage of Airbnb among a panel of some 4,000 travellers was three percentage points less than expectations in an earlier survey.
The note also looked at awareness of the brand in some key markets. These are shown below and indicate that spectacular growth is no longer likely going to come from markets where Airbnb is already well established.
The note may have prompted insiders to reveal more about the company's figures, if a story from Bloomberg is to be believed. It says that the company has been profitable for 17 months and that revenues have doubled since last year and that bookings in Asia and South American have grown sharply.
The company is having to alter some of its activities. Airbnb has announced that it is capping at 120 per year the number of days that properties in central arrondissements in Paris can be let for. Renters will also have to register with the authorities.
A mooted IPO for Airbnb in 2018 might be behind the leaks to Bloomberg. If the flotation does go ahead then we may get more insight into the company's business and in its business travel activities in particular.