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Airbnb in 2018 1 Airbnb in 2018 Airbnb was founded in 2008 when Brian Chesky and a friend decided to rent their apartment to guests for a local convention. To accommodate the guests, they used air mattresses and referred to it as the “Air Bed & Breakfast.” It was that weekend when the idea—and the potential viability—of a peer-to-peer room-sharing business model was born. By 2018, Airbnb had seen immense growth and success in its 10-year existence. The room-sharing company had expanded to over 190 countries with more than 4 million listed properties, and had an estimated valuation of $31 billion. Airbnb seemed poised to revolutionize the hotel and tourism industry through its business model that allowed hosts to offer spare rooms or entire homes to potential guests, in a peer-reviewed digital marketplace. This business model’s success was leveraging what had become known as the sharing economy. Yet, with its growth and usage of a new business model, Airbnb was now faced with resistance, as city officials, owners and operators of hotels, motels, and bed and breakfasts were all crying foul. While these traditional brick-and-mortar establishments were subject to regulations and taxation, Airbnb hosts were able to circumvent and avoid such liabilities due to participation in Airbnb’s digital marketplace. In other instances, Airbnb hosts had encountered legal issues due to city and state ordinances governing hotels and apartment leases. Stories of guests who would not leave and hosts needing to evict them because city regulations deemed the guests apartment leasees were beginning to make headlines. As local city and government officials across the United States, and in countries like Japan, debated regulations concerning Airbnb, Brian Chesky needed to manage this new business model, which had led to phenomenal success within a new, sharing economy. OVERVIEW OF ACCOMODATION MARKET Hotels, motels, and bed and breakfasts competed within the larger, tourist accommodation market. All businesses operating within this sector offered lodging, but were differentiated by their amenities. Hotels and motels were defined as larger facilities accommodating guests in single or multiple rooms. Motels specifically offered smaller rooms with direct parking lot access from the unit and amenities such as laundry facilities to travelers who were using their own transportation. Motels might also be located closer to roadways, providing guests quicker and more convenient access to highways. It was also not uncommon for motel guests to segment a longer road trip as they commuted to a vacation destination, thereby potentially staying at several motels during their travel. Hotels, however, invested heavily in additional amenities as they competed for all segments of travelers. Amenities, including on-premise spa facilities and fine dining, were often offered by the hotel. Further, properties offering spectacular views, bolstering a hotel as the vacation destination, may contribute to significant operating costs. In total, wages,