Airbnb to cut global workforce by a quarter

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will a of its staff around the world as the booking platform recalibrates in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Some 1,700 roles, form a total of 7,500, will go.

As demand for travel stalls, the company added it would scale back or halt newer initiatives, such as investments in hotels and luxury resorts and flights.

The firm is bracing for revenues to drop by half or worse this year.

“We are collectively living through the most harrowing crisis of our lifetime, and as it began to unfold, travel came to a standstill,” Airbnb chief executive and cofounder Brian Chesky said in a letter to employees.

Chesky said Airbnb could not be sure when travel would return, or what form it would take when it did.

He added: “Travel in this new world will look different, and we need to evolve Airbnb accordingly.

“People will want options that are closer to home, safer, and more affordable.

“But people will also yearn for something that feels like it’s been taken away from them – human connection.

“When we started Airbnb, it was about belonging and connection.

“This crisis has sharpened our focus to get back to our roots, back to the basics, back to what is truly special about Airbnb – everyday people who host their homes and offer experiences.”

Airbnb recently raised $2 billion in two rounds of funding in order to ensure it had sufficient funds to get through the downturn.

The company added redundant employees would receive 14 weeks of base pay, plus one additional week for every year at Airbnb.

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